No to Islamic law ( Sharia) in Iraq
No to an Islamic regime in Iraq
Yes to a secular state in Iraq
Yes to an egalitarian law in Iraq
Statement of the Organization of Womens Freedom in Iraq on the Governing Councils adoption of Islamic Sharia
In a step aimed at eliminating all progressive gains achieved by the Iraqi women through years of tireless struggle, and against the aspirations of women and the progressive and egalitarian masses in Iraq, the Governing Council has announced the abolition of Iraqi family Law in place of Islamic Sharia. Saddams regime had already repealed many articles of the Iraqi family law in order to implement articles of centuries-old Islamic Sharia including those condoning honour killing. They beheaded sex workers and launched the so-called faith campaign to impose compulsory veil on women.
However, todays announcement by the US puppet Governing Council goes well beyond Saddams compromises with the Islamists. Their closed door decision replaces the Civil Personal Status Laws, which date back to 1958, with religious law and Islamic Sharia; a move which will wipe out all womens rights gained in decades of relentless struggle.
The Iraqi society will not stand for the implementation of laws which became invalid a half century ago. The Iraqi society is a secular society. Iraqi women and men never imagined overthrowing Baathist fascism only to replace it with an Islamic dictatorship. The Governing Council, soon after its inception, changed International Womens Day from 8 March to another Islamic date in order to pave the way for imposing Islamic laws on Iraqi society. They plan to recreate the miseries of women in Afghanistan, Iran, and the Sudan who are striving to emancipate themselves from the hell of Political Islam as soon as possible.
The Governing Council, installed by the USA, absolutely does not represent the Iraqi masses. Rather, it stands firmly against them in their aspirations for equality and liberation. This body has no legitimacy to create laws and impose them on the Iraqi masses.
The Organization of Womens Freedom in Iraq, from its inception, has stood against these imposed governing bodies. OWFI called in its founding statement for the establishment of a secular and non nationalist state, which achieves gender equality. We demand a secular constitution that treats all Iraqis on bases of equal citizenship. OWFI strongly condemns these laws which will be catastrophic for women and goes against the will of the Iraqi masses.
Secular government in Iraq that adopts a secular institution, separation of religion from state, education and all governmental institutions, full gender equality are urgent demands not subject for compromise.
Our protests in Baghdad and all over the world will deny the Islamic groups any chance to impose their medieval laws on the masses of Iraq.
We call on all defenders of gender equality and womens freedom to add their voices to the voices of women in Iraq. The swards of Islam and Islamic Sharia are in sight threatening the lives and the rights of women in Iraq.
For full gender equality
For a secular state in Iraq
Organization of Womens Freedom in Iraq
January 14, 2004
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