15th Forum on Minority Issues
1st and 2nd December 2022
Association Ma'onah for Human Rights and Immigration and Geneva International Centre for Justice (GICJ)
Delivered by Loïc Dorthe / GICJ
I speak on behalf of Association Ma’onah for Human Rights and Immigration and Geneva International Centre for Justice, NGO’s defending human rights in Iraq since the criminal US invasion of 2003.
But 20 years later, we still recognise two main factors which must urgently be addressed.
The first is the malfunctioning of the political confessional system imposed on the Iraqi people. Most minorities were ignored, leading to the proliferation of partisan organisations. Their militias are weakening the central government, they are accentuating corruption, they are ignoring the rule of law, and they are dangerously threatening the rights of minorities.
The second factor is the continued foreign interference in Iraqi's internal affairs. Favouring certain sectarian groups, this interference adds to the instability of the country. We specifically denounce interventions from the Islamic Republic of Iran, whose affiliated militias are attacking and targeting specific minorities of an unprecedented level. Their involvement is contrary to international law, and should be condemned by the international community.
We are immensely concerned about Iraq's inability to guarantee security and respect for human rights for all its ethnic and religious groups. We urge a total change of system separating religion from politics altogether. In addition, new legislation, that is effective in practice and not only in the law, must be designed to protect individual and community rights. Finally, we condemn all foreign interreferences weakening Iraq and threatening its people, and request the international community to act upon.
Note the comments of the Representative of Iraq earlier - we share their condemnation of crimes against humanity by Da'esh - but the situation is much more nuanced. Other groups, not only terrorist groups operate - some without accountability. Our task here is precisely to remind the international community and the state concerned, that civil societies are not fooled. Of course, we condemn Daesh, but the responsibility of the state in these crimes must not be removed by hiding behind this narrative.
I thank you.