WASHINGTON, DC • BRUSSELS • BAGHDAD
The Institute for International Law and Human Rights (IILHR) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization registered in Washington, DC; Brussels, Belgium; and Baghdad, Iraq. IILHR helps transitioning states develop the capacity to strengthen democratic values and build respect for human rights.
With a staff of diplomats, parliamentarians, human rights activists, and attorneys, IILHR has a strong track record of implementing programs with local partners that foster dialogue and create better policies to protect citizens’ rights.
As an organization focused on strengthening human rights in countries emerging from conflict, IILHR upholds the freedom and equal dignity of all human beings and is committed to the principles of diversity, equity, inclusion, and non-discrimination.
Judge Omar Ahmed Mohammed, Chairman of the Iraqi High Electoral Commission (IHEC), and IILHR Country Director Robin Gary signed a memorandum of cooperation on 27 September 2023. IILHR provides technical and legal assistance to the IHEC as it implements new directives in the Electoral Law of 2023, and prepares to conduct Provincial Council elections this December, and Kurdistan Regional elections scheduled for February 2024.
IILHR recently played an important role in facilitating a process that allows investigative and appeals court judges from the Iraqi Federal and Kurdistan judiciaries to exchange information and cooperate on cases. Most recently, IILHR convened a groundbreaking meeting of judges on 27 May 2023 at Baghdad’s Judicial Development Institute.
Appeals court judges identified practical steps for better communications and evidence-sharing between the two groups. Iraq’s Supreme Judicial Council as well as the Kurdistan Judicial Council asked IILHR to convene these groundbreaking meetings on an ongoing basis to prosecute counter-terror and other sensitive cases more effectively.
Analyzes the Child Protection draft law. Main areas of concern and comment include expanding the scope of the law to encompass all the rights guaranteed by the Convention on the Rights of the Child; ensuring that the law does not discriminate on any basis; adding provisions against practices harmful to girls’ rights, such as female genital mutilation; abolishing or amending existing legislation that contravenes the Convention on the Rights of the Child; strengthening legal penalties for those who harm children; using terminology that conforms to international standards and clearly and consistently defining the term “children”; clarifying the processes and measures for implementing the law’s provisions; elaborating on the roles and responsibilities of the National Childhood Committee and the Childhood Protection Department created by the law; and mandating that the new Committee and Department are adequately staffed by qualified personnel, including a minimum number of women.
Our goal is to deepen citizenship and political participation through stronger laws that implement Iraq’s constitution and promote inclusiveness and accountability; build dialogue and consensus around legislative and grassroots priorities; and strengthen research, technical, and advocacy skills to empower local and vulnerable groups through inclusive citizens teams that provide community-based input to reforms in Erbil and Baghdad.
Our goal is to provide training and mentoring to the government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government to effectively investigate, prosecute, and adjudicate terrorism-related crimes. We also want to facilitate a more effective, responsive, and accountable criminal justice system that provides a safe and secure domestic environment, regulated by laws that are evenly applied, independently adjudicated, and consistent with international standards.
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