Why is Iraq Challenging Human Rights Reports?

National Coalition member of parliament Ahmed al-Asadi, who is Shiite and the spokesman for the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Units that is considered part of the Iraqi state, criticized the HRW report, which claimed that the Iraqi security forces and the Popular Mobilization Units committed war crimes.

Asadi said, “The information in the HRW report is erroneous and aims at tarnishing the victories of these factions and acts hypocritically by accusing the Popular Mobilization Units and avoiding speaking about IS violations.”

The successive Iraqi governments after 2003 have not been satisfied with the reports issued by international human rights organizations, especially those shedding light on violations carried out by Iraqi governments or their affiliated militias. This has resulted in a state of ongoing dissatisfaction with those organizations.

Another report issued by the United Nations on Feb. 23, 2015, documented “serious violations of international humanitarian law and gross abuses of human rights perpetrated over a three-month period by [IS]. These include killings of civilians, abductions, rapes, slavery and trafficking of women and children, forced recruitment of children, destruction of places of religious significance, looting and the denial of fundamental freedoms.

In light of the atrocities committed by IS, namely burning civilians alive, HRW issued in September 2015 a report titled “Ruinous Aftermath” on violations by pro-government militias in the city of Tikrit in Iraq’s Salahuddin province.

Hadithi said in this context, “Most of the region’s governments are not on good terms with international human rights organizations. We, in Iraq, have found that some of the international reports were based on information from unreliable sources.”

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