National campaign for justice launched in Baghdad
The Iraqi Higher Judicial Council and UNDP jointly launched today a media campaign in Baghdad to raise awareness on the justice system in Iraq. This campaign is part of the UNDP programme "programme “Support to the Rule of Law and Justice in Iraq" which is generously funded generously funded by the European Union.
"This campaign primarily targets the disadvantaged: the poor, the vulnerable, the illiterate and victims of violence. Our aim is to let them know that the Iraqi judicial system exists and is able to deliver transparent justice to help them solve their disputes in a transparent manner" said Judge Abdel Sattar Ghafour Berkdar, spokesperson of the Iraqi Higher Judicial Council.
Using televised media, radio and other mass media tools the campaign provides information on legal rights and how Iraqi courts work in an aim to encourage citizens to feel comfortable approaching the courts. “I am delighted we launched this campaign in Baghdad today. This shows our strong commitment to supporting Rule of Law and Human Rights in Iraq" said Jobst Von Kirchmann, Head of Cooperation for the European Union in Iraq. " Through real-life examples we hope to encourage more Iraqi people from all social backgrounds to benefit from the court systems" he added.
One third of those interviewed in a survey conducted in Baghdad stated they preferred using informal tools rather than the court systems to resolve disputes. When asked why they listed lack of trust and transparency in courts and lawyers, the fear of high costs and the complexity of the judicial system. Pressure from the local community to settle disputes informally without going to the courts, particularly in cases involving adultery, rape and domestic violence was also raised.
"This campaign is yet another example of how UNDP is partneringis partnering with local institutions to improve the lives of Iraqi people" said Peter Batchelor, Country Director of UNDP Iraq. Our Rule of Law Programme under which this campaign is implemented would not have been possible without the substantial support of the European Union and we are very grateful for their engagement and commitment to working with us to strengthen the rule of law inlaw in Iraq" he added.
Ms. Juliette Touma, UNDP Iraq, firstname.lastname@example.org, +962-79-826-34-37