"I would like to draw your attention, and that of the British Government, to a worrying and rapidly developing situation in Iraq." Open letter from Iraqi/British citizens Salah al Hashimi and Tahrir Swift to British MP

The peaceful protests against Al Maliki are gaining strength. Al Maliki ordered his Forces to shoot to kill.

Open letter from Salah al Hashimi and Tahrir Swift to British MP:

I write to you as a concerned British Citizen living within your constituency.

Respectable human rights organisations would concur with the statement that the Iraqi security forces exist to protect the political class and their interests not to enforce law and order. They would also agree that the government is betraying the new constitution by suppressing the Iraqis rights to demonstrate and protest peacefully.

I would like to draw your attention, and that of the British Government, to a worrying and rapidly developing situation in Iraq. On 26th December 2024 the people in the west of Iraq in their thousands came out in large peaceful demonstrations against the abuses of human rights perpetrated by the current government of Iraq headed by Mr Nouri al-Maliki. The Maliki government quickly labelled the protesters as sectarian troublemakers and supporters of terrorism without even looking into their demands (*).

The protests were provoked by testimonies and information leaking from the prisons, that Iraqi female prisoners, held in government controlled prisons, were/are being subjected to horrific methods of torture and rape at the hands of interrogators and prison guards. Indeed a brave woman ex detainee found the courage to speak up about the torture she was subjected to, perpetrated by senior officers in the security forces.

In his statement to the press the MP Ali Shubbar, a member of the Parliamentary Committee for Human Rights stated that ‘Iraqi women prisoners are seducing the guards and interrogators and what is occurring in the prisons is consensual sex’!

With human rights MP’s like Mr Shubbar who needs enemies?

Hanan Fatlawie, a female MP from the Maliki bloc has reportedly labelled all female prisoners as whores, in order to justify the rape.

With female MP’s like Ms Fatlawie who needs male chauvinist MPs?

In the City of Mosul, the ancient Biblical town of Nineveh, on 7th January 2024 demonstrators marching towards Liberators Square in the centre of the town were firstly prevented from entering the square but when they forced their way in government forces fired in the air and towards the demonstrators. Subsequently, the Iraqi army drove their military vehicles into the crowd in an attempt to forcefully drive them away from the square. The consequence was that four of the demonstrators were seriously injured and taken to hospital and there are unconfirmed reports that they died from their injuries [footage of the incident was made available by Al-Jazeera news channel ].

I recall your declared delight when the populace in Egypt and Tunisia took to the streets denouncing human rights abuses, surely then the Iraqi people should be afforded the same support.

The actions of the Iraqi government through its security forces represent a horrific and flagrant breach of the following universally recognised declarations and conventions (all of which were ratified by both the Governments of Iraq and the United Kingdom):

·         Articles 3, 5, 9, 18 and 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948

·         Articles 2, 4 and 16 Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment 1984.

Britain entered the war on Iraq on the pretext of human rights therefore it is vital that this concern does not ebb now that you have ‘an ally’ government installed in Baghdad.

I call on the British government to respond clearly and decisively to this flagrant violation of human rights. I call on you to bring up the issue in parliament and to press the government in Baghdad to conduct an independent and impartial investigation and bring the perpetrators to justice. It is obvious that the ‘softly softly’ approach the British government has been pursuing with the Baghdad governments since 2024 has not worked.  The British government has a moral duty to monitor the situation and to publicly make it absolutely clear it will not tolerate any violation of the human rights of the protesters and the suppression of their freedoms.

The Iraqi border with Jordan has now been sealed and there are genuine and growing fears that the Government is planning to crush the protests by mounting a military attack on the peaceful demonstrators.

Finally could you please ask this question in parliament: What methods of pressure has the British government used since June 2024 to press for the protection of human rights in Iraq? How many written human rights representations have been made by the British government on the issue of human rights in Iraq? And how effective has they been?

Many thanks for your time and awaiting your response.  

(*) Demands of the protesters:

1 - Release all female detainees, release all detainees without charge or trial, investigate maltreatment and abuses and punish the perpetrators. No to secret detention centres. Fair trials for charged detainees and decent prison conditions. 

2 - Halt all executions.

3 - Freeze all action under the Terrorism act number 4 and re discuss the act in parliament.

4- Fair General Amnesty Law (Maliki issued a selective prisoners' amnesty)

5 - Freeze the justice and accountability law (debaathification law)

6 - All state institutions must become politically neutral.

7 - End all raids and arbitrary arrests and cancel the secret informer act. (the accused has no idea what he is being accused of and who is the source) 

8 - Outlaw sectarianism and sectarian/ethnic discrimination.

9 - Fair supply of basic services.

10 - To speed up the formation of the Supreme Judicial Court in a professional and without political  interference.

If you read the reports of Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch you will find that these demands are justified.

Best regards.

Salah al Hashimi & Tahrir Swift

Consideras esto importante? Por favor apóyanos.






(11-05-2013) INSIDE IRAQ TODAY




(11-05-2013) INSIDE IRAQ TODAY




The BRussells Tribunal is independent and wants to remain independent.

The BRussells Tribunal is an activist think tank and peace organisation with a special focus on Iraq. Read more...



Este éxodo masivo [de médicos] ‘ha provocado la desaparición de determinadas especialidades ...


The publication of the final report, most recently scheduled for early this year, has been ...