Kurdistan’s crimes shed painful light on culture of ‘killing women’

A security guard’s murder of his wife and four family members in the Kurdistan region has sparked angry reactions, amid calls to reduce cases from powerful officials providing protection for those wanted by the judiciary , while the government has undertaken to deal with the case of female killers in accordance with the procedures in force with terrorists.

Residents of Chamchamal district, east of Sulaymaniyah governorate, awoke on the morning of the first day of Eid al-Fitr, to a horrific crime when an officer with the rank of police captain emergency stormed his father-in-law’s house. law, killing her, her mother, sister and brother, and her son, while three others were injured.

Anger spread when authorities revealed the perpetrator’s identity, as media reported that he was “a supporter of a brigade commander of the National Union Party (led by Bafel Talabani) , and that he had already been on trial for murder in 1993, but the commander provided him with protection,” while a statement said It was issued by the Major General’s office that “ the accused had fled from the service two months ago, in the context of a court order issued for his arrest on the charge of being involved in another crime, and at that time an official notification was been sent to the relevant authorities.”

Promises of justice

District Commissioner Chamchamal Ramak Ramadan announced that “the relationship between the abuser and his wife (they have five children) was strained, and eventually the wife chose to separate from him, but the husband refused and took her away. urged to return home,’ noting that “a security force arrested him after he attempted to escape, he is currently under investigation”.

As for Deputy Prime Minister Qubad Talabani, on his Facebook page, he expressed his “great regret at the start of the first day of Eid to hear the news of a horrible crime”, then announced in a statement later that he would take care of dropping her off, emphasizing that “the accused will receive his just punishment, and I call on you to calm down. And rest assured that even if you ever forgive the culprit, I will not reverse my position by bringing him to justice. ”

Talabani warned the perpetrators saying, “We will not allow you to escape justice, and we will arrest you wherever you are, and be sure that I will not let you sleep well, and I will deal with you as we deal with you. with ISIS terrorists,” and added, “We will treat you without mercy as you have treated your victims, because the killing of women deserves no mercy or exemption.” He continued, “It is time to uproot the culture of murdering women, and it is the task of everyone from society, pens, media and religious.

No protection for authors

Dozens of families and relatives of the victims gathered on Sunday outside the office of the regional parliament in the city of Sulaymaniyah and delivered a memorandum to the region’s presidencies calling for the harshest sentences to be imposed on the perpetrators of the crime. and its execution. A woman was pregnant,” and called for “reducing these crimes, standing up to those who provide protection to the perpetrators, so we express our support for the claims of the relatives of the victims.”

For his part, the father of the victims declared in a speech: “We demand the execution of the author at the place where he committed the crime”, and called on Qubad Talabani and the three presidencies to “accelerate the procedures judiciary”, while the office of the regional parliament underlined its rejection of “any attempt to provide protection to the perpetrators, by any person or entity A, but they must be brought to justice to reduce crimes in Kurdistan”, noting that “The memorandum will be submitted to the rest of the presidencies of the region in order to expedite the trial of the culprit.

Activists and human rights organizations say more than 15 women have ‘either killed or committed suicide’ in the region since the start of this year, a sharp increase in the phenomenon compared to the same period in 2021 , and data issued by the government’s Directorate General for Combating Violence against Women indicates that the past year has seen “ten women killed, 41 committed suicide, 45 suicide attempts by arson and 77 cases of assault complaints”, in addition to registering “more than eight thousand complaints lodged by women.”

The latest data published by the Regional Police Directorate recognizes that “the authorities have arrested only 470 defendants out of the five thousand and 920 wanted by the courts in various cases against which court orders have been issued since 1991, and they are still at large either outside the region or in Iraq, because some of them have changed their names in countries of asylum, or they have been hiding in various ways, or the arrest warrants have long expired . “The prime minister, Masrour Barzani, has ordered the formation of a special operations room which includes representatives from the interior ministry, peshmerga and security services, to arrest these defendants,” the spokesperson said. word of the management, Karzan Ghafouri, to Rudaw TV, which is close to the president of the region. , and others that belong to political parties or military and security agencies, and are protected from prosecution, in addition to the presence of the names of party officials.

Hypothetical scandal and stabbing revenge

Social media users have interacted with the crime calling for the harshest sentences to be meted out to the defendants to stem the phenomenon. Writer Bakhtiar Said said that the police’s acknowledgment of the presence of around 5,500 fugitives out of the 6,000 wanted by the courts “is a scandal”, and he wondered: “Who are those who provide these protections so far apart from both the ruling parties and influential officials, who else would dare to do this?” He explained: “I think if we search the party inns, the clan councils and the sheikhs, we could find 70% of them taking refuge there thanks to agreements, and therefore the police and the security will not have the capacity to stop them”, noting that “these defendants were yesterday mercenaries of Saddam Hussein’s regime, and today they have become men of power, so who can stop these pharaohs?”

As for Nawzad Muhammad Aziz, he commented: “The passage of this type of crime, like the rest of the previous crimes, will lead to hundreds of crimes. Kamran Muhammad Nuri confirmed that “this defendant is not alone, there are dozens of others in Jamgal living in freedom and in front of security forces and police, and no one can hold them accountable” , while Khadija Khanum said that “executing ten of these suspects in public in the city center, or stoning them like hell, will put an end to these heinous acts. He is still breathing and enjoying life.”

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It was only two days after the Chamchamal crime, until Sulaymaniyah police returned to report that a husband had stabbed his wife 15 times, after which she was taken to hospital. She had been asking for a divorce from him for several months, preferring to live with her mother, because he forced her to commit heinous acts for money”, while the husband denied the accusations, stating that he was ready “to appear in court to prove his innocence. But the spokesman for the Directorate for Combating Violence against Women in Sulaymaniyah, Raz Faryad, revealed that “the couple had differences, and the husband went to his mother’s house and then attacked his wife with a knife and stabbed her several times, but her health is stable,” noting that the husband “previously he was arrested and released on bail.

At the same time, police in the Karmian district of Sulaymaniyah announced that a 26-year-old boy had committed suicide in his home with a gun, two days after another young man killed himself in the same way. Last Monday, the Erbil Police Directorate revealed that more than 1,500 suspects had been arrested for various offences. The Directorate’s spokesperson, Hawker Aziz, told a press conference: “Since the beginning of the year, 1,537 suspects and wanted persons have been arrested in Erbil Governorate, including those accused of committing murder. He pointed out that “532 lawsuits were registered, of which 472 were settled during the month of Ramadan and the days of Eid al-Fitr only”.

Insufficient efforts and international cooperation

Activists believe that efforts to reduce the phenomenon of violence against women, despite their importance, “were not feasible”, which requires the development of “long-term strategic plans” such as a review of the judicial system and related laws and the application of strict and dissuasive sanctions, taking into account the possibility of escaping the perpetrators of the sentence by releasing them in accordance with the bail decision, by signing a written undertaking , as well as by “establishing programs for the first stages of education and raising awareness at the different levels. »

In order to support women and girls who are victims of gender-based violence in the Kurdistan region, the United Nations and the United Nations Population Fund announced, in the middle of last month, “the establishment of ‘a partnership with the Italian Agency for Development and Cooperation’, and stated that this partnership ‘will help to increase access for survivors of gender-based violence and those at risk who need access to high quality protection, and will contribute to facilitating access to justice through practical operational standards and procedures adopted for law enforcement and police actors,” she added, adding that the project “will also enhance the capacity of the Iraqi Ministry of Labor and Social Council, the High Council for Women’s Affairs of the region and the General Directorate for Combating Violence against Women to implement policies and serve those that deal with violence against women and girls.

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