Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

News Update Iraq

Iraqi Woman Nominated for Non-Fiction Prize

March 28, 2006

An anonymous young Iraqi woman has been nominated for an award for her blog written about life in war-torn Iraq. The online publication, Baghdad Burning, is one of the 19 books under consideration for the BBC’s Samuel Johnson Prize for non-fiction.

The winner will be announced on June 14 and the prize money is £30,000.

According to BBC News:

“Professor Robert Winston, chair of the judging panel, said this year's long list contained "an exceptionally wide variety of genres".”

“This year's panel includes theatre director Sir Richard Eyre, columnist Cristina Odone and Michael Prodger, literary editor of the Sunday Telegraph.”

Click here to read the whole article

U.S.-Iraqi women's Summit Provides Glimpses of War’s Challenges

March 27, 2006

Everyday activities are a struggle in Iraq, where going to the store to buy milk, hosting a birthday party for your son or daughter or just walking down the street can mean risking death.
Despite these conditions, Iraqi women’s voices are being heard across the world.

According to an article by Paul Burkhardt of Associated Press about a U.S. delegation of Iraqi women:

“"Women have the ability to express the problem because, not only are we closer to the ground, we know the impact on children and families," said Dena Merriam of The Global Peace Initiative of Women, a leadership network that organized the summit. "It's in our blood, we're instinctive about it."”

“She added that organizers included more than 90 American women to discuss issues with the Iraqis because they "felt more that women would respond to their needs and take action."”

“Ambassador Sumaidaie agreed with others that the United Nations needs a stronger presence in Iraq to help children and families. The world body has gradually returned about 120 staff members to Iraq since all employees were pulled out following an August 2003 bombing on U.N. headquarters in Baghdad that killed 22 people.”

Click here to read the whole article.

U.N. to Iraq: Form Government Now

March 27, 2006

The situation in Iraq has been described by some as untenable and U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan's Special Representative Ashraf Qazi says that there has to be a change now. Civilians are appalled by the daily cases of torture, arbitrary arrests and extrajudicial executions that have affected all communities.

According to United Press International:

"Iraq must come together to overcome violence," U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan's Special Representative Ashraf Qazi said Monday. "There is a need, more than ever before, to speed up the formation of a government that will assert respect for Human Rights and the rule of law in an alarmingly deteriorating security situation in Iraq."

"While fully upholding respect for the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity, the international community has a duty to caution Iraq's political leaders that there is no alternative to the creation of a national government," he said. "An administration which is perceived as merely a loose collection of interest groups will not succeed and is far below what Iraqis deserve."

Click here to read the article.


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