Freedom of the press in Iraqi Kurdistan

When I was a child I dreamed of being a journalist. Of sharing stories with the world and uncovering the truth. It seemed so glamorous and important, changing the world with the mighty pen. I didn’t understand then what the glamour of bringing information to the public could really look like. I didn’t understand that many journalists are murdered, tortured, imprisoned, threatened and bullied because of their work.

Prayers for Peacemakers 1 May 2019

Please pray for the families from Deraluk in Iraqi Kurdistan who have recently lost a family member to Turkey's cross-border bombing. Six men, who were fishermen and beekeepers, died in the bombing, but only four bodies have been recovered. The grieving families want to know the truth about what has happened to their two loved ones who are still missing. 

Prayers for Peacemakers, 27 February 2019 Iraqi Kurdistan

We pray for the immediate release of CPT-Iraqi Kurdistan partner Sherwan Sherwani and other journalists and civil society activists whom the government has imprisoned in Duhok, Iraqi Kurdistan. We pray for strength to endure and freedom for all political prisoners in Iraqi Kurdistan and around the world. We also pray for their families and loved ones and for a day when freedom of expression is lifted up and cherished around the world.

IRAQI KURDISTAN: The killing of Himda'at Othman Darwish and the occupation of Barmiza Village.

A Turkish war pilot fired the rocket that disintegrated the body of Himda’at Othman and shattered the lives of those who loved him. Himda’at Othman was not a man of war. In his early twenties, the oldest son of Othman Darwish and Jawhar Abdullah and with a wife and infant son of his own, he worked hard to support his family by trading between the parts of Kurdistan controlled by the two dominant political parties.

IRAQI KURDISTAN: “We are not terrorists, not ISIS; we are sons of this town; we are with you!”

On the 23 January 2019, the Turkish military killed six people in a cross-border bombing near the Kurdish town of Deraluk.  Across Iraqi Kurdistan, many shared in the devastation of the families who lost loved ones, and the attack sparked outrage against the Turkish military presence in nearby Shiladze.

IRAQI KURDISTAN: A silence louder than bombs

On 25 January 2019, we were on our way to visit Halania, a Kurdish village where a Turkish bombing ended 19-year-old Dunya Rasheed’s life. Our team has been to Halania many times over the past months and written several articles trying to raise the voices of Dunya’s family in hopes that something will help stop these acts of violence against the people of Iraqi Kurdistan. Each time we visit, we are welcomed warmly however the mood is always somber. As the team’s translator and also one of our Kurdish team members, these visits are especially hard on me. I have to soak in every word because I want to translate for my team in a way that is both accurate, but also conveys the emotion of the speaker. I want people to be able to retell these stories in a way that will make others care about our partners’ struggle and my country’s pain.
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