#Baghdad_Women_Association held an online meeting with decision makers in the Iraqi parliament with Mrs. Intisar Al-Jubouri, chairwoman of the Women, Family and Childhood Committee to discuss the measures taken to pass the draft law on domestic violence as an urgent response to the escalation of domestic violence cases in Iraqi society in line with the curfew due to Corona epidemic On April 28, 2020, as part of the project (Enhancing the Role of Women in Leadership and Decision-making) funded by Norwegian People’s Aid.
The meeting was facilitated by the project manager, lawyer Rasha Khalid, as the axes of the meeting were about (identifying the steps taken by decision makers regarding domestic violence, challenges, recommendations). As Mrs. Intissar Al-Jubouri mentioned the most important steps that she took, such as holding urgent meetings with Mrs Hanan Al-Fatlawi and Director General of the Women’s Empowerment Department Mrs. Ibtisam Aziz and the Chairperson of the Iraqi Women Parliamentarians Alliance Mrs. Ala Talabani to discuss ways to reduce domestic violence that increased highly during Covid19 crisis and to provide protection to victims, who are mostly women and Children, a discussion meeting was also held with Mr. Faeq Al-Zaidan, head of the Supreme Judicial Council, asking him to take alternative measures to prevent perpetrators of domestic violence by activating the legal texts included in the Iraqi Penal Code No. 111 of 1969, which are almost invalid as a temporary solution until the draft law on combating domestic violence is passed, as well as meeting the Minister of the Interior and the Secretary-General, Mr. Hamid Al-Ghazi, and an interview with Mrs. Jeanine Plasschaert, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq, in order to urge everyone to unite efforts and lessen distances and time to pass the law quickly,
As for the challenges, the most prominent of them is that the caretaker government does not have the right to pass the law, and this is what has also delayed its legislation. Some leaders of the blocs oppose it for the same previous reasons, as they see it as a restriction of patriarchal authority and contradict the right to discipline as well as that the draft needs more amendments in order to achieve prevention for perpetrators of domestic violence and provide protection, care and rehabilitation for the victims.
The meeting was concluded with a set of recommendations, most notably the participation of opposition bloc leaders in training sessions held by BWA on gender as an attempt to influence their convictions and thinking, as well as expanding relations with the media, strengthening coordination with other CSOs, and uniting efforts in order to achieve the desired goal which is parallel with Article 29 of the Iraqi Constitution.