Iraqi women’s rights under threat

// 21 July 2005

Iraqi women could see their rights stripped away from them by their newly democratically elected government, Ms reports.

Plans to revise the Iraqi constitution would see the stipulation that women hold 25% of seats in the national assembly scrapped, and family law – which governs key areas such as marriage, divorce and inheritance – given over to the jurisdiction of religious courts.

The proposals would mean family law cases would be heard by the local religious sect, and would mean those women in communities that were resistant to egalitarian reform were even more vulnerable.

Women would also only have equal rights in so far as this conformed to sharia law.

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