Iraqi Civil Society Solidarity Initiative

The Iraqi Civil Society Solidarity Initiative (ICSSI) is dedicated to bringing together Iraqi and international civil societies through concrete actions to build together another Iraq, with peace and Human Rights for all.

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In the memory of the October uprising martyrs

Ever since the peaceful protests that went out on the 1st of October 2019, and the lifting of the last tent in Tahrir Sq. On 25 October 2020, a lot of events happened on the political, democratic, economic and social levels of Iraq.

As we all know, a number of protestors have demanded a new election law which is called “Muti- Electoral districts” which states: Each district has its own candidates and people from this district can only vote for the candidates of the same district.

This law has already been suggested back in 2018 by parliamentarians who were affiliated with AL-Sadir Movement. Therefore, a lot of people and analysts said that this law serves the best interest for AL-Sadir Movement. The reason for this allegation is the fact that the followers of this party are very loyal, organized and they actually follow the orders of the movement leader Muqtada Al-Sadir. Therefore, during the election period, they have assigned 1 candidate for each district from their party, and guided their followers to vote for that candidate which made the density of the Sadrist electors was focused on one candidate in each district. And based on these indications and factors, Al-Sadir Movement won the election with a big number of voters, moving forward to the events between the Coordination Framework and Al-Sadir Movement. 

Baghdad, 1st of October 2022

The October Uprising has changed a lot of extreme social values in Iraqi society towards a coherent peaceful society. Tishreen went out in the principle of patriotism, that all Iraqis are equal, demanding equal rights and freedom to all Iraqis. Unlike a lot of other protests, this one held and meant these values sincerely which resulted into spreading these values through most of the Iraqi society. And we can see a lot of significant changes in the Iraqi society before and after the uprising. For example, Iraqi youth now are more interested in politics, news, political poetry and taking actions and stands. Iraqi male teenagers’ harassment of Iraqi girls has reduced alongside judging girls for their looks and clothing. Based on the effective women participation in the protests, women rights activists and awareness have increased proportionally. 

Through the last year, the economic situation in Iraq has collapsed when the Iraqi government decided to lower the Iraqi Dinar value to the United States Dollars value to cover the loss in the Iraqi budget. This has caused economical damage to the livelihood of most of the Iraqi, the essential products in the market alongside all other products’ prices has gone up due to the fact that there is no local manufacture for almost all the market products and the daily life expenses of an average Iraq has become very expensive. 

After 25th of October 2020, a number of political parties were formed, holding the name and slogans of Tishreen and their martyrs. Such as Imtidad, Al-Bayt Al-Wattani (The National Home), “Nazil Akhid Haqqi” Movement, Al-Bayt Al-Iraqi (The Iraqi Home) and Ishraqat Kanoon and many others as well as independent figures and activists. Some of these parties and independent individuals have decided to participate and nominate themselves in the 2021 Iraqi Elections while others have decided to boycott the elections. A lot of civilians argued about their nominations between being in favor and against it. For those who were encouraging their nominations they had their point saying that we need people to represent a civil national ideology and Tishreen is the most suitable option for that. And for those who were against it, they also had their point by elaborating the fact that these new parties are not strong enough to stand against the corrupted strong parties who have all the money, militias, guns and power to control the decision making process and the whole situation in Iraq and that those new parties will have to work hand to hand with corrupted once in order to gain more power and become actually somewhat effective. Moving forward to post elections, some of these parties and individuals have actually won some positions in the parliament, and as the days went by, those who were against the nomination were right to some point. For example, Alaa Al-Rikabi, the secretary general for Imtidad was found on many occasions attending gatherings and meetings with the coordination framework which led to 5 members of Imtidad to leave the party although they have denounced their cooperation with them and also formed an alliance with the New Generation Kurdish Party. 

And besides the political levels, their have been a lot of protests that held the name of Tishreen through these last couple of years alongside protesting stands for the anniversary of the October uprising, one of them was the on 25th of May 2021 in Baghdad which was oppressed by the police which led to the death of one protestor with 14 others injured. 

Baghdad, 1st of October 2022

Today is the 1st of October 2022, the third anniversary for the October uprising, there will be protests spreading around Iraq, especially in Baghdad. With the fact of the political escalation of Iraq right now, we don’t know what will happen today or in the upcoming days but we hope that peace may float in the Iraqi atmosphere and we encourage the politicians to use discussion and argument as a tool to help them work their problems out.

Read more on the violations of human rights in a report made by Al-Karrar Hassan, click here.