Femicide continues in Kurdistan Region despite calls for ending it  

Government should work “seriously” to prevent femicide from reoccurring

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Cases of femicide in the Kurdistan Region continue to reoccur despite condemnation and calls for putting an end to the killing.

Lawyers and members of the Kurdistan Parliament call on the Kurdish government and courts to work on the cases of femicide and bring perpetrators to justice.

People took to social media and reacted to the killing of a woman in Erbil by her ex-husband in Erbil on Friday.

According to her family, she was shot with “13 bullets in front of her mother”.

Prime Minister Masrour Barzani said in a tweet that he was “appalled” by the killing of the woman, saying “there is no honor in ‘honor’ killing; it is murder, sets us back, and must end”.

“Our society will never truly thrive if half of the population can’t live freely without fear of violence. In this cabinet, we have increased resources to shelters for vulnerable women seeking support and protection, and I’m committed to doing more to help,” he added.

Repetition of Femicide in Kurdistan Region

Lawyer Lanja Khawe, who works on the cases of women, said the government needed to have a policy and a plan as well as study those cases seriously to combat femicide in the Region.

“Despite having organizations and a directorate to combat violence against women, femicide is still happening,” Khawe told Esta Media Network.

“The reason behind the repetition of those cases is that there is no policy and plan to prevent femicide beforehand. But when a woman is killed, all stand against it,” she said.

At least 25 women were murdered in the Kurdistan Region in 2020, according to the General Directorate to Combat Violence Against Women. Thirty-eight others committed suicide and 67 others self-immolated.

Regarding officials’ remarks, Khawe said the government should do “real works” to prevent femicide and that slogans alone and ignoring reality “has no importance”.

“Since government officials and lawmakers have duties and responsibilities, they should not speak as a person who doesn’t have a post. They, however, should see femicide and other cases on women as a political issue and seriously work on them,” she continued.

She further said awareness should be given to people through the sectors of education and high education as well as media.

Role of Kurdistan Parliament  

Gulistan Mohammed, member of parliament’s committee on protection of women’s rights, said the main reason of femicide repetition in the Region “is the presence of weapons having no [legal] permits in the houses, not handing over murderers to courts, lack of rule of law, and sheltering them [perpetrators] by the political parties”.

“For Kurds, femicide is a disgusting identity, and it must be ended,” she told Esta Media Network.

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