Vi­o­lence against women still big con­cern in Kur­dis­tan

Around 17 cases of sex­ual ha­rass­ments re­ported across Kur­dis­tan Re­gion

The Kurdish Globe - - NEWS - By Salih Wal­ad­bagi

Around 589 cases of vi­o­lence against women have been recorded in May, 2013 alone, in­clud­ing four cases of killing and 17 cases of sex­ual harass­ment, ac­cord­ing to the of­fi­cial fig­ures from the Kur­dis­tan Re­gional Govern­ment’s (KRG) Gen­eral Direc­torate to Trace Vi­o­lence Against Women.

The vi­o­lent cases in­clude four cases of killing, six cases of self-killing, 24 cases of burn­ing, 11 cases of im­mo­la­tion and 536 com­plaints as well as 17 cases of sex­ual harass­ment.

The KRG has so far be­gun to show in­ter­est to solve vi­o­lence against women in Kur­dis­tan Re­gion. It has rat­i­fied and tight­ened cer­tain laws to re­duce the num­ber of the vi­o­lent cases. The newly passed laws con­sider “Honor Killing” as “will­ful mur­der” and whose per­pe­tra­tors re­ceive se­vere pun­ish­ments.

While, the KRG is try­ing to de­crease the num­ber of vi­o­lent cases, in con­trast, the num­bers in­crease and lead to at­tract the at­ten­tion of the women de­fend or­ga­ni­za­tions and the govern­ment too.

“In com­par­i­son to last year in May, the num­ber of the vi­o­lent cases against women has in­creased. Last year in May, around 428 cases of vi­o­lence recorded, while it has reached in the re­gion of 589 cases this year,” the Direc­torate’s fig­ures show.

Er­bil, cap­i­tal of the semi au­ton­o­mous Kur­dis­tan Re­gion, has re­ceived the lion's share of the vio- lence. The num­ber of the vi­o­lent cases in Er­bil is es­ti­mated to be around 198. Out of which, three cases of killing recorded as well as three cases of self-killing, seven cases of burn­ing, four cases of im­mo­la­tion, 179 cases of com­plaints and 2 cases of sex­ual harass­ment.

Mean­while, fem­i­nist ac­tivists be­lieve that this rise in the num­ber of the vic­tims is not a new phe­nom­e­non. They say the govern­ment plans to de­crease the num­ber of the vic­tims, but, in con­trast, they in­crease. “There might be lack of man­age­ment or fail­ure of strate­gies in the KRG’s plan,” the ac­tivists be­lieve.

Of­fi­cials in the direc­torate say that in­creas­ing in the num­ber of the com­plaints is ev­i­dence that the level of un­der­stand­ing and aware­ness among women has raised, by which, they ask for their rights and take le­gal ac­tions to re­port the vi­o­lent cases.

Iraqi Kur­dish women protest against vi­o­lence and in­equal­ity in the prov­ince of Sulaimaniyah.

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