A platform to strengthen the capacity of CSOs as participants shared knowledge, exchanged information and discussed tools and strategies to promote protection
Baghdad, 9 December 2020 – A workshop for Iraqi Civil Society Organizations on promoting protection from enforced disappearances, facilitated by UNAMI Human Rights Office in collaboration with the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) and the Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights (IHCHR), provided a platform to strengthen the capacity of CSOs as participants shared knowledge, exchanged information and discussed tools and strategies to promote protection.
Key topics of discussion also included civil society engagement with the relevant UN Treaty Bodies and Special Procedure Mandate Holders, the role of CSOs in responding to the needs the victims of enforced disappearances including the families of the disappeared, and the need for the government to enact legislation on the protection of all persons from enforced disappearance in line with its international human rights obligations. Among recommendations was a call on the Government of Iraq to fulfil its obligations on the protection from enforced disappearance, finding the missing and ensuring accountability.
Participants in the three-day, online event included representatives of 24 Civil Society Organizations (CSO) – 16 men and eight women - from Anbar, Baghdad, Babel, Diyala, Ninewa and Salah al-Din governorates. Expert guest speakers from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Institute for International Law and Human Rights (IILHR) also made presentations during the event.
Speaking after the event, Danielle Bell, Chief of UNAMI’s Human Rights Office and Iraq Representative of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, said the workshop helps further strengthen the capacity of CSOs in conducting their work. “Addressing the longstanding issue of enforced disappearances in Iraq requires a coordinated a response by all stakeholders, and Iraqi civil society plays a key role in encouraging the Government of Iraq to take all necessary steps to put an end to enforced disappearance, provide redress to victims and hold the perpetrators to account.”