18.2.2013 – ERBIL-Hewlêr, Kurdistan region.  Monthly statistics of anti-violence against women revealed that 89 women lost their lives, while another 357 were burnt in 2012. According to Warvin website site, violence against women reached to 5000 cases in the three provinces of the Kurdish region.

The statistics pointed out that 47 women were killed by their relatives, while another 42 women have ended their lives in different ways (claiming they have committed suicide), as reported. According last year statistics, 260 women had burning attempts, including 97 committed the burning act.  Another form of the violence that the directorate has collected data on is rape, 167 cases have been recorded, and 756cases of torture against women have been recorded.

Last November Kurdistan Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani joined the High Committee of the Campaign Combatting Violence Against Women to open a conference on promoting women’s rights and combating domestic violence in Erbil. Critics say the Women’s High Council in Iraq’s Kurdistan Region has done nothing to change women’s lives, and its members occupy positions only for personal gain. Observers said KRG fails to combat violence against women in Iraqi Kurdistan.

For years, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in Iraq’s north has struggled to fight violence against women in the region, with statistics still indicating high rates of violence amid efforts by feminists to challenge the government’s strategy on this issue.

In 2002, Kurdistan’s parliament amended Article 111 of the Iraqi penal code, increasing the punishment for honor killings and considering them willful murder. This was the first step taken by the provincial government in this regard.It should be noted that in second article of law number 8 against domestic violence (2011), 13 forms of violence have been defined, but the directorate of trace violence against women only records 7 forms of the violence.