In June 17th 2014, we are a group of Iraqi intellectuals (academics, artists, authors, journalists, and civil activists) from all Iraqi provinces including Kurdistan region, agree to launch a comprehensive national initiative to save Iraq, stop the political and security deterioration, and get our homeland out of the crucial crisis that threatens its unity.
The Iraqi pain is limitless. No one can imagine the tremendous damage that the Iraqi individual has suffered through decades of interior/exterior wars. Therefore, the human conscience is today encountering a hard challenge for taking a serious and honest action to stop this shame. The International Community still seems ineffective in treating the Iraqi people fairly.
We still believe that rationalism, tolerance, and brotherhood will be eventually achieved in our afflicted country. Meanwhile we look forward to make this path shorter and decrease the casualties to reach these upscale goals. Our hope is endless; so let’s interactively work together on actual steps to achieve our initiative’s goals.
This is an initiative that hopes to make Iraq secure, united, and healthy. As we present the items of this initiative, we are waiting for your support and encouragement to a quick cooperative work that helps to protect our shared supreme humanitarian ideals. These ideals are tragically being violated in a country that is considered one of deep-rooted civilizations among all other human societies.
We will make it with you and by you. Iraq will remain.
The Initiative of Iraqi Intellectuals for the Unity of Iraq
In this critical historical moment; in the presence of huge challenges that the history, civilization, and people of Iraq confront which may threaten their unity, security and future; with these dangerous consequences that occurred and will occur due to the terrorist attacks on Mosul and some other Iraqi cities; and with our certainty of the extent of faults and doubtful politics that enabled terrorism to control some Iraqi cities, the Iraqi intellectual responsibly stands to warn the people of Iraq from the heavy dangers that threaten the whole country. We intellectuals ask all parties to take their responsibilities in fixing the national split and maintaining the security and safety of the country.
Here is what we ask for:
1- As we condemn the government practices and all involved political parties for their responsibility of the mess and deterioration of national security, we request to hold an immediate conference for national reconciliation, supervised by the United Nations UN and attended by all Iraqi political forces besides all active currents in the Iraqi society. We ask for comprehensive review to the political operation, amendment of constitution, and making essential reforms by the hands of Iraqis in order to eliminate the disagreements and construct durable democratic institutions.
2- We support the security efforts that the State of Iraq undertakes to regain the cities and towns that have been occupied by violent non- state actors. These efforts should comply with the Iraqi constitution, human rights, and international law during the military operations. We also stress that all weapons should be monopolized exclusively by the state and never let any groups or militias to seize the chance and make sectarian profits at the expense of Iraqi national identity.
3- We urge the Iraqi government and all other national forces to communicate with the inhabitants of the provinces that have been occupied by the violent non- state actors in order to positively coordinate, regain their trust and convince them on the choice of being part of Iraq again. At the same time, we ask the government to respond to their demands and eliminate the injustices they suffer.
4- We call for the establishment of an extensive political alliance that should be trans-sectarian/religious/racist and include all democratic, reformist, and rational currents. It should peacefully and constitutionally work on a new political form instead of the current political sectarianism that destroyed the country.
5- We urge all clerics from all religions and sects to deliver their unmixed and conclusive advisory opinions (Fatwas) in supporting societal peaceful coexistence and condemning hate speech and expiatory terrorism, specifically The Islamic State in Iraq and Sham (ISIS). We also condemn any religious Fatwa that calls for the use of weapon out of the state security institutions in which it leads to deepening the gap among Iraqi sects.
6- We refuse the “state of emergency” declaration that the government tries to impose in order NOT to be politically used in a way that offends the democracy and desired political pluralism.
7- We ask the new-elected Parliament to immediately meet and take its full responsibility in supervising all Iraqi institutions according to the constitution.
8- We refuse the regional interventions that contributed in destroying Iraq. These governments should carry the legal responsibility according to the international laws.
9- We blame the United States of America, as the sponsor of Iraqi political operation that it carries the direct responsibility of what Iraq encounters now. We ask USA to correct this situation politically, NOT militarily via the diplomatic channels that respect the independence and sovereignty of Iraq.
10- We ask the decision makers in all cities, specifically the cities that have been occupied by the terrorists, to maintain and reconstruct the historical monuments, religious buildings, and all other cultural institutions and infrastructures that were damaged due to the deteriorated security situation.
11- We ask the intellectual elite in all Iraqi provinces to hold an exceptional conference and announce their stance against the attempts of dividing Iraq into sectarian and ethnic cantons. Furthermore, we ask them to condemn the governmental failure in dealing with social services, security, and terrorism issues.
12- We ask all media institutions to be professional and avoid agitating sectarian and racist trends that benefit certain political parties at the expense of supreme national advantage.
13- We ask the security forces to protect the civilians and maintain their properties during the military operations. We also call the government to provide a secure environment and support displaced people with foods, medications, and shelters in cooperation with international humanitarian organizations. We kindly ask the people of the other secured provinces to receive those displaced people as this complies with the Iraqi traditions, humanitarian ethics, and generosity that our people identify with.
14- We hope all international peacemakers and democratic powers in the world to support our initiative via their political and mass activities in order to put pressure on their governments for helping Iraqis to make real national reconciliation and rebuild their state based on the citizenship principles, laws and social justice.
Iraq is one state with one people of cultural pluralism that has used historically to live unified and share one civilization. Therefore, we ask Iraqi people to be aware of regional conspiracies that want to see the state fallen apart and drag Iraqis into hate, disagreement, and civil war.
This is our Iraq, our last spiritual stronghold in this life. We need to see Iraq as possible united and precious homeland that is rich of its pluralism, deep- rooted civilization, and prestige. We need to maintain the hope. We need to maintain Iraq.
This initiative has been signed up by more than one 1300 Iraqi intellectuals until now , in Arabic version you find a list of some of these signatures .