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.

Iraqi Human Rights Activist Shot Dead in Basra

BBC News

A female human rights activist has been shot dead in the southern Iraqi city of Basra, which has seen violent anti-government protests in recent weeks.

Video posted online appears to show an unidentified man opening fire at Suad al-Ali as she gets into a car near a supermarket in the Abbasiya area.

Another man, believed to be her husband, was wounded in the attack.

Mrs Ali, who supported the protests, was head of an organisation called al-Weed al-Alaiami For Human Rights.

A photo of her on the group’s website that appears to have been taken earlier this month showed her at a demonstration with other women. A caption said they were standing “side by side with our brothers, sons and family in our Basra”.

Basra, which is home to more than 2 million people, has seen months of violent protests amid growing public anger at issues including poor infrastructure, contaminated water, and a lack of jobs.

The demonstrations continued after a two-week pause on Tuesday, with almost 1,000 people reportedly taking to the streets.

Earlier this month, protesters set on fire a number of government and political buildings, as well as the Iranian consulate and the headquarters of an Iran-backed paramilitary force, after a number of people were killed in clashes with police.

Local residents say the government is corrupt and has allowed infrastructure to virtually collapse in a region that generates much of Iraq’s oil wealth. They have also denounced what they perceive as Iran’s control of local affairs.