On Tuesday, 17 Nov. 2015, the Parliamentary Committee for Women’s Affairs and the Iraqi Women Journalists Forum held a meeting on Shahrazad campaign to discuss the results and recommendations of the IWJF study on the phenomenon of harassment in the Iraqi society.
MP Rehab Al-Abboudh, the President of the Parliamentary Committee for Women, explained the importance of the joint work between the Committee and the Forum on laws that protect women, and declared that studies are a helpful factor in mobilizing public opinion. She showed that the committee is fully prepared to activate the Shahrazad Campaign study’s recommendations, particularly with regard to amendments of the Iraqi Penal Code for prosecution of the harasser and reduction of this phenomenon.
For her part, Nibras Maamouri, President of the IWJF, described the objectives of Shahrazad campaign being run in cooperation with the Iraqi Civil Society Solidarity Initiative, and its role in mobilizing public opinion. She confirmed that the Forum is fully prepared to cooperate with the parliamentary committee for women affairs to support women’s rights, and activate them in the media sector, citing also a series of laws that can help reduce domestic violence.
The meeting included extensive debate between the members of the Parliamentary Committee and the members of IWJF on the results of the Shahrazad’s study and the achievements that can be reached through cooperation and joint communication efforts. A representative of the Forum has been appointed to attend the meetings of the parliamentary committee on a regular basis for the specific purpose of supporting the work of the committee on media. The meeting ended with the joint adoption of an advocacy campaign to amend the Iraqi Penal Code, in addition to mobilizing public opinion to speed up the approval of the “Reducing Domestic Violence Law” and the adoption of a joint action strategy for communicating with all media organizations.
At the conclusion of the meeting, the president of the parliamentary committee praised the courage and hard work of the IWJF, confirming that joint work needs to continue in the near future.
Download here the study by Shahrazad Campaign on Sexual Harassment in Iraqi Society.