Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Iraqi Minorities Security Council Proposition

Written by  Suhaib Nashi
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To protect the remaining minorities in Iraq, the world needs to support the establishment of the Minority Security Council that has the authority to defend the rights of the minorities and assure equal treatment and opportunities to all Iraqi citizens. This council must have advisors to the Iraqi President, the Prime Minister, and the Chairperson of the Council of Representatives of Iraq (CoR).

The Iraqi minorities have found that their rights took a deeper dive to the worse in the New Iraq. They had no place to voice their concerns and fewer political powers would listen, let alone act. Their situation is getting worse especially after the rise of ISIL. The renewed fight for power after the new elections and the rearrangement of power makes the Minorities Rights much lower on the Iraqi agenda. We think that this issue has no chance of success if it were adopted by the USA and UN as an international responsibility.

This Council will be a first step toward trust-building and as a sign of good faith from the new Iraqi leadership towards religious minorities.

The definition of security here implies short-term and long-term security including physical, mental and social security.

The council should include the following:
Representatives of all ethno/religious minorities in Iraq including Christians, Sabian Mandaeans, Yezisdis and other religious minorities
Representatives of the Prime Minister's Office
Representatives of the Security and Emergency Forces from both the police and military
Representatives of the Ministry of Human Rights in Iraq
Observer/s from the UN or any other agreed upon, neutral international body

Council functions:
Short Term:
1. Act upon any immediate threat to the minorities by direct hot lines from designated Minority members
2. Follow up on the atrocities and find out the final result in regular monthly meetings
3. Follow up on the humanitarian needs of the refugees inside Iraq or outside
4. Other immediate needs

Long Term:
1. The council will work as the place for minorities to voice their concerns and suggest working solutions for these concerns based on citizenship
2. Work to monitor the progress of the governmental implementation of the constitutional rights of minorities and bring the attention of the government to any breaches of these rights
3. Work to rebuild the lost confidence between the minorities and the Iraqi government and help in the return of the refugees to their homelands
4. Work to build the infrastructure of the historically disadvantaged minority communities in Iraq

The presence of an international monitor appointed by the UN through a mandate by the Un Security Council will work as a safeguard and prevent any future disregard to minority rights.

We hope that our suggestions will be considered, studied and improved to a final suggestion that can be negotiated with the Iraqi powers.

Thank you,

Suhaib Nashi
G. Secretary
The Mandaean Associations Union

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