Iraq: Activist Imprisoned for Peaceful Criticism of Security Forces

From Human Rights Watch (HRW). Any opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Iraq: Activist Imprisoned for Peaceful Criticism of Security Forces

A criminal court in Baghdad sentenced an activist to three years in prison on December 5, 2022, for alleged criticism of the deceased former head of the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF, or al-hashd al-shaabi), Abu Mehdi al-Muhandis, Human Rights Watch has said.

On June 6, the authorities detained the activist, Hayder Finjan al-Zaidi, 20, based on a Twitter post he allegedly made but released him on bail after 16 days. He and his father Hamid, 66, deny that he posted the criticism, insisting that his Twitter account was hacked.

The authorities should immediately release al-Zaidi, halt all prosecutions that infringe on defendants' basic rights and scrap the law that criminalizes criticizing public officials.

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(Source: HRW)

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