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Threat, extortion and defamation … Cybercrime is expanding in Iraq and the women its victims

Since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, the phenomenon of widespread cybercrime has gripped the country, especially crimes targeting women, including the crimes of infidelity or extortion of girls, defamation, defamation and indecent assault against them through social media, which has caused major problems that have plagued the cohesion of Iraqi families.

Specialists believe that the reasons for the spread of these crimes are due to the weak application of law in Iraq now, in addition to the decline in the moral and value system in society, the absence of religious faith, and the widespread poverty and unemployment experienced by some Iraqi families.

Lawyer and judicial expert Tareq Harb believes that cybercrime of various kinds, such as defamation, insult, sexual harassment, threat of weapons and terrorism, and blackmail and drug crimes have increased during the period of social distancing since the outbreak of the Corona pandemic, and now constitute 35% compared to other criminal crimes.

Some cyber crimes also target the promotion of major criminal offenses due to the absence of legal culture in this type of crime, as Hussein Ali al-Aqabi, a deputy for the legal committee in the Iraqi parliament, says to Al-Jazeera Net.

Al-Uqabi noted that the committee pressed and continues to legislate new laws on cybercrime, but the file is stalling at the Iraqi parliament table without approval, considering that the legislation of this law has become an urgent necessity, in order to spread the legal culture in the electronic system. He pointed out that the Iraqi penal laws do not cover these crimes in a clear and detailed manner, and there is a void area that needs to be legally covered.

Al-Taie said that cyber crimes are mostly solved through negotiation and tribal reconciliation and not through the courts (Al-Jazeera)

Clan reconciliation

Perhaps the crimes that take the direction of infidelity are among the most common types of cybercrime in Iraq, and the crime may not amount to adultery in itself, but it is adapted according to Article 377 of the Iraqi Penal Code, according to lawyer and judicial expert Fadhel Muslim Al-Taie.

Al-Taie says that Iraqi courts are rarely resorted to in such crimes, because most of them may be resolved through tribal reconciliation and negotiation, because most men resort to using these crimes, including adultery against the wife, in order to pressure her to give up her financial rights. He pointed out that such crimes demolished many Iraqi families and displaced their children.

Al-Taie explains that the current Iraqi legal materials are not compatible with the new concepts of contemporary reality, as they are old legal texts that were developed before the current technological development, and they need to be modified, in addition to legislating new texts that are compatible with the nature of the act.

Zainab Rabie saw that many men use religious texts and old legislation to confirm the masculinity of society (Al-Jazeera)

Loss of state prestige

For its part, the Iraqi journalist Zainab Rabih Abdul Karim believes that “Eastern society is governed by customs, traditions and religion. It is possible to fabricate anything that contradicts and contradicts religious and social norms, so women will be easy prey, and these are specific cases and not many, but in light of social legacies and religious issues.” There are still many men who reinforce the masculinity of society and are based on ancient religious texts and legislations.

The Iraqi media stresses the need to impose the prestige of the state, saying that the security situation and instability in Iraq are among the main reasons for the spread of such crimes, considering that the blackmailer will not be able to threaten any girl in the event of a security institution that the Iraqi street fears.

It concluded that the issue depends on activating the security effort, pursuing and tracking these criminals, and imposing strict measures and penalties against them.

Hanaa Al-Shammari considers that the misuse of technology is due to the short view of some men towards women (Al-Jazeera)

Aggressive oriental man

As for the human rights and women’s rights activist Hana Muhammad al-Shammari, she believes that the poor exploitation of technology in social networking sites is due to the deficient perception of some men towards women, as the eastern man can express all his perverted and aggressive whims without being checked or censored, and without any moral scruples, and this What we see is very clear and exposed in our societies.

Al-Shammari notes that confronting and fighting this phenomenon must be done with the solidarity of all Iraqi institutions, including the legislative and executive bodies, as well as the media and activists in civil society organizations, in bearing the responsibility of protecting society, and protecting Iraqi women in particular, from being subjected to persecution and exploitation.

Al-Shammari affirms that women’s organizations and human rights organizations are working to intensify awareness-raising and empowerment programs for women, and to provide them with a helping hand, as well as organizing educational and information workshops for women, increasing their awareness and educating them on how to protect themselves from exploitation and extortion.

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