A female political activist has been shot dead in the Iraqi city of Basra, in the third such attack in a week. Riham Yaqoob, a doctor who led local anti-government protests, was killed by unidentified assailants on Wednesday. The killing on Friday of another activist, Tahseen Osama, saw protesters take to the streets to demand the authorities uncover those responsible. Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi dismissed Basra's chief of police and other security officials in response. Following the killing of Dr Yaqoob, he vowed to "do everything necessary for the security forces to undertake their duties".
Iraqi Women are Engaged in a Struggle for their Rights
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Iraqi women and girls have played an integral part in the demonstrations that have gripped Iraq since October , taking to the streets en masse to call for gender equality, as well as protest against the broader social, political and economic conditions which continue to enable and justify patriarchal violence in the country. Furthermore, women and girl survivors of gender based violence GBV continue to face innumerable obstacles in gaining access to justice. The reasons for legal discrimination and patriarchal violence against women and girls in Iraq are manifold. They can be broadly divided into three categories: the persistence of patriarchal norms, the nature of the Iraqi legal system and the weakness of state institutions. Among the key laws which discriminate against women and girls in Iraq is the Penal Code.
Female Iraqi activist killed in Basra as gunmen target protesters
Women in Iraq have repeatedly been the victims of conflict. They suffer displacement, rape, injury and death. At the same time, Iraqi women show remarkable resilience and courage in the face of adversity. Amid conflict and displacement, women in Iraq are in a particularly vulnerable position. The struggle to get ahead is difficult and the future is uncertain.
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