In a country which has suffered from decades of conflict and violence, numerous violations remain in the post-ISIL era, including executions, abductions, torture, and unfair trials. Iraq remains the country with the highest number of enforced disappearances worldwide, with estimates going up to one million missing persons. This practice, which began at the time of Saddam Hussein and persisted after the 2003 U.S. invasion, escalated in the context of the fight against ISIL, and continues to be used in a widespread and systematic fashion by government forces and state-sponsored militias.

The country with the fourth highest number of executions in the world, the death penalty is routinely handed down by courts, in the vast majority of cases under the broad 2005 Anti-Terrorism Law, which applies the death sentence mandatorily. This is particularly concerning considering that the country suffers from a flawed judicial system which systematically admits confessions extracted under torture as evidence.

The authorities also continue to clamp down on the rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly by subjecting journalists to interference and by cracking down on peaceful protests.


Country legislation

Penal Code

Antiterrorism Law of 2005

Publications Law of 1968 (AR)

National Human Rights Institution Law of 2008 (AR)

Internal Security Forces Penal Law of 2008

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