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.

Rights and Peace: the 3rd Session of the Iraqi Social Forum on 22-24 Sept. in Baghdad

بوستر الخاص بالمنتدى الاجتماعي العراقي

update 19th of September : now you can download the detailed program isf-program-2016

Self-organized workshops, a Baghdad Marathon for Peace, convergence assemblies (gatherings on key issues for the social forum dynamics) and open cultural and artistic activities. All of these will be included in the 3rd session of the Iraqi Social Forum (ISF) taking place on the 22nd-24th Sept. 2016, in the heart of Baghdad.

Weeks ago civil society organizations, activists, artists and people involved in the Iraqi Social Forum started preparing for the 3rd session and chose the theme of this year: “Rights and Peace”. They hope in a  vast national and international participation, after the successful previous session in 2015 where more than 3000 participants got involved in more than 200 activities.

They invite you to be part of the biggest Iraqi self-organized social event. The ISF is the biggest social forum in the Middle East and the second Arabic forum after the Moroccan, within the World Social Forum process that was launched back in 2001 in Brasil as a space for exchange and convergence among social movements, NGOs, unions and other CSOs.

Headlines of the Iraqi Social Forum Programme, 3rd season

Key issues:

  1. Save the Tigris Campaign, water rights and the environment
  2. Social and economical rights and social justice
  3. Women rights and equality
  4.  Nonviolence, peacebuilding and the protest movement in Iraq


Thu. 22nd Sept : 

Registration, opening and self-organized workshops

Location: Theatre Forum – Baghdad – alRashid Street  area.

Fri. 23rd Sept.

Convergence assemblies on key issues

Location: Theatre Forum – Baghdad – alRashid Street  area

Sat 24th Sept.

Baghdad Marathon for peace, Open artistic and cultural activities and the Closing Ceremony

Location: Abu-nawas gardens in Baghdad

The forum is an open event for all who share the values and principles of the World Social Forum’s Charter.

How to participate – from Iraq

  • To attend the forum’s activities, you don’t need to register.
  • To register a self-organized workshop register here (Arabic). After registration we will contact you to discuss how to organize your activities.  You find information in this regard on our Page on Facebook and on our Website
  • To register as participants of Baghdad Marathon for Peace, please keep track of the Marathon Page on Facebook, where the dates and places of registration will be announced.
  • To co-promote one of the convergence assemblies of this season, you should have a registered self-organized workshop within this session dynamics.

How to participate – for internationals and from outside Iraq

  • There will be an international delegation in this session too, coordinated by the Iraqi Civil Society Solidarity Initiative (ICSSI). The visa to Iraq still represents a huge obstacle for the participation of internationals who express solidarity with Iraqi activists. That’s why the ISF committee decided to launch a campaign soon on this issue with Iraqi authorities.
  • Those who want to participate in the ISF by going to Baghdad, should write a short letter to introduce themselves and their motivation to participate and send it to:

The extended forum – Participate from your own country!

  • You can participate in the extended ISF by organizing activities in solidarity with Iraq and consistent with the WSF charter, in any country and city in the world, in September and October 2016. Please send to images and news about the events, that will be posted in the extended ISF map.
  • You can also participate via internet to follow online and virtually join some activities during the ISF days. To arrange a distance call during the ISF, please send an e-mail to:

Why the Iraqi Social Forum?

Within the difficult situation Iraq is going through, the war against Daesh (IS) and its impact on millions of Iraqi Internally Displaced People, with the damages produced on our cities, and in the continuous political crisis generated by the sectarian quotas in Iraqi institutions and the on-going bad security situation, with the lack of adequate services and social justice, we do need to unify the efforts of civil society and set the energy of Iraqi youth free, to rebuild peace and stability in our beloved country. The ISF activities during the previous and the current year concentrated on organizing grassroots activities to spread the values of co-existence, peace and nonviolence, and to support the nonviolent protest movement that fights for social justice an human rights.

The 3rd season will offer a social space to organize and create alternatives, thus building the hope that another Iraq is possible. It is a new chance to organize, coordinate and work together, to widen the ISF as an open space for democratic dialogue, to discuss ideas, formulate suggestions, exchange expertise, and foster interaction between social movements, NGOs, and other components of the Iraqi society.

We are a non-religious, non-partisan and non-governmental initiative, that is characterized by multiplicity and diversity. We aim to facilitate non-centralized interaction and networking among organizations, associations and movements, locally and internationally. With you, we hope to build ideas and collect suggestions of concrete steps to build another Iraq, as a part of another world that is possible!

The Iraqi Social Forum National Committee, August 2016.

download this call PDF