• Country: Iraq
  • Contact person: Michaela Eckart
  • Duration of the project: August 2020 – March 2024
  • Social media channels: Facebook and Instagram (in Arabic)
  • Website:  http://www.womentalkingpeace.com/
  • Project objective: To support women in reaching leading roles in organisations, institutions or peace processes in politics and society in Iraq.

After more than twenty years after the United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 on Women Peace and Security was adopted, women in Iraq and the MENA region continue to struggle with the consequences of violence, war and conflict. Peace and reconciliation remain unfulfilled dreams for most of them, despite the positive role they play in bringing them forward. Both countries’ experiences and scientific evidence prove that peace initiatives and conflict resolutions which are actively shaped by women tend to be successful.

Women can and must play a creative and equal role in shaping the future of the Iraqi state. Their involvement in peacebuilding processes not only corresponds with the Iraqi government’s existing international obligations, but it also offers concrete opportunities to pursue peacebuilding and state-building aside from the official peace initiatives that are mostly dominated by men.

The project aimed to involve women in peacebuilding and state-building processes in Iraq and to support them in performing leading roles in organisations, institutions or peace processes. Participating women were active in civil society and women from politics, for example parliamentarians and female government members from central Iraq, the provinces, and the autonomous region of Kurdistan.

The project brought together women from different ethnic and religious groups: Kurdish women, women from the Shiite south and from Sunni regions, and women from religious and ethnic minorities. In addition, it addressed decision-makers and state representatives at a decentralized level in all provinces of Iraq and Kurdistan. Tribal and religious leaders as well as – female and male – police officers, prosecutors, judges, and members of the armed forces participated in training courses.

The main guidelines of the project are the UN Convention on the Rights of Women (CEDAW) and the UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on the Participation of Women in Peace Processes, which has been in existence for 20 years in 2020, its 10 subsequent resolutions, and the second National Action Plan (NAP) from 2014-2018 for Iraq, which aims at gender mainstreaming in all political fields and processes of conflict prevention, conflict resolution and peacebuilding in Iraq.

The project was funded by the GIZ on behalf of the government of the federal republic of Germany.