One of them chained and locked,

Kirkuk police: Two women rescued

A woman was locked up and chained for 20 days at her parents’ in Kirkuk, July 2023. Media of Kirkuk Police Command

By Laila Ahmad in Kirkuk

Two women imprisoned inside their parents’ and relatives in Kirkuk; In two separate incidents, one of them was chained and locked for 20 days, were rescued, Kirkuk Police Command said Thursday.

Kirkuk police forces, in collaboration with the community police, rescued the two women prisoners and the lock and leg chain of one of the women was broken inside the police headquarters on Thursday.

"We rescued two women from house arrest in Kirkuk today," Lieutenant Amer Nuri, spokesman for the Kirkuk police command, told KirkukNow.

The first incident, a 33-year-old woman, was chained and locked at one time in a room at her parents’.

"She was detained for 20 days by her father and brothers because of social problems and on the grounds that she would not run away from them,” Lieutenant Amer Nuri added.

"The woman was not physically abused, there were no signs of beating, but she was imprisoned in a room. We rescued her and she is now under the supervision of the community police.”

"We call her every day and if she doesn't respond or abused, she will be taken to a shelter," Amer said.

The police command posted photos of the woman's leg chains being broken on Facebook, without giving details about the incident.

“The police commander and the community police are intervening to solve several social problems such as humanitarian issues and asking parents and spouses to treat vulnerable people with kindness,” the post by Police says.

Domestic violence is any form of violence or abuse violence that takes place within the family, carried out by any member of the family regardless of whether it is a man or a woman, parent or child. It is an action or omission that undermines the psychological, physical, economic or sexual integrity of another member of the family.

According to the statistics of the Supreme Judicial Council, 21,595 cases of domestic violence against children, women and the elderly were registered in courts in 2022 across Iraq (excluding the Iraqi Kurdistan Region IKR), of which over 17,000 cases were violence against women.

In 2021, 22,365 cases of domestic violence were registered including 18,602 cases of violence against women. There were 500 cases of domestic violence in Kirkuk.

The bill, which proposes measures to prevent violence, including the opening of shelters in the provinces, has been in the Iraqi parliament for several years and has not been approved.

The Kirkuk administration has repeatedly announced the opening of a shelter for threatened women since last year, but has not received any threatened women yet.

Another woman was rescued today.

"She was abused by her parents and her mother-in-law's and imprisoned in a room for seven days," spokesman for the Kirkuk police command said.

The woman is married, but her husband "divorced her verbally, face to face but not in court and left her," Lieutenant Amer added as the case remains under investigation because relatives of both parties are involved.

Article 29 of the Iraqi constitution prohibits the use of violence and oppression in the family, schools and society.

There are efforts to pass Child Protection and anti-domestic violence law, which provides some measures to prevent violence, yet have not been approved by the Iraqi Parliament.

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