Research studies

Human trafficking and sexual exploitation: Iraq as a case study


Dr.Ahmed Adnan Khadim- 

Dr. Basim Ali khrassn- 

Democratic Arab Center


 The  human trafficking and sexual exploitation considered as an issue or phenomenon that has recently received a huge international and regional attention .the main target of this research is identifying the effects of this phenomenon on individuals living at any place .but the hard circumstances  which inflicted Iraq after 2003 ,because of the invasion by united states of  America and its allies , in addition to prior stages before 2003 under the regime of (( saddam Hussein)) which witnessed a devastating oppression . Therefore, some individuals are especially vulnerable to being trafficked by specialized agencies and middlemen to performance that form of organized crime. Thus , Iraq became a center for people flowing up inside and outside of the country since 2003 following the overthrow of (Baath despotism) . the human trafficking and its results might threaten and reflected on the reality of the whole society within , and all of that is needed to address problems that several countries where the abuse is committed . therefore , this phenomenon could be chosen as priority to approve our knowledge about this issue. It is obvious that more work is needed to better investigate its multifarious aspects.

Human trafficking and sexual exploitation have a social , psychological , economical and humanitarian impacts on individual victim, as well as the gender and health dimensions which have so far and not been adequately investigated at any time .

 So that, we should researched in the reason of this issue and regular migrants at any cause whose labor or human rights have been violated and abused at a certain stage, and rapidly caused the victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation . this article has been closely associated with the matters of human rights , especially , the rights of the integral components within the whole society, coexistence, and to watching or monitoring of human right violations would be very necessary by humanitarians working groups ; by discussing a potential anti-trafficking intervention with an instrument internationally to prohibiting the traffickers and exploiters.

First: Human trafficking and Sexual Exploitation: the Conception dimensions

1- The conception of human trafficking:

   Human trafficking is one of the most heinous crimes of our time. Across the globe, millions of people live in slave-like conditions, generating billions of dollars in profit for their traffickers. Human trafficking undermines the security of states because of it is related to organized crime and corruption ([1]).

     Definition of human trafficking , the most recent and concrete is that advocated by the Palermo  protocol, trafficking protocol adopted by united nations in 2000 , the Palermo protocol defines human trafficking as the((recruitment, transportation , transfer, harboring or receipt of persons , by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion , of abuse of power , of apposition , of vulnerability or , of the giving and receiving , of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person for purpose of exploitation))([2]).

According to the Palermo convention which concluded in Italy (CTos) of 2000 and considered a criminal offense is transitional, if it satisfies one or more of the following criteria ([3]) : 

1 – It is committed in more than one state.    

2- It is committed in one state, but a substantial part of its planning, direction or control takes place in another state.

3- It is committed in one state, but involves an organized criminal group engaged in criminal activities in more than one state.

4- It is committed in one state, but has a substantial effects in another state.

 The exact definition is as follows:

“Trafficking in persons” shall mean the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons, by means of threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labor or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs such as :

  (A) The consent of the victim of trafficking in persons to the intended exploitation.

  ( B ) The recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of a child for the purpose of exploitation shall be considered ‘trafficking in .

(C) “Child” shall mean any person under 18 years of age ([4]).

The elements of human trafficking for an act to be considered human trafficking , it must comprises  several constituent elements and one of elements from each of it must be present for trafficking to occur ([5]) .

2 – Sexual Exploitation:

 Sexual exploitation in human trafficking comprises a significant portion of overall human trafficking activities . It would be not possible for this type of human trafficking to exist without demand for commercial sex around the world. Even though commercial sexual exploitation has been criminalized, and sexual trafficking continues to take place in almost every country of the world , been it a place of origin , transit or destination .

The organization of the largest European union (Eu) conference on preventing and combating trafficking in human beings, which held in  Brussels from 18 to 20 of September 2002 , as an example of the political priority being accorded to combating human trafficking . than European union adopted a recommendations on 8- may-2003 to set out the commissions’ approach by experts group on trafficking in human beings([6]).

For recruitment, traffickers resort to deception, in particular through false promises of well-paid jobs or opportunities to study abroad. As was suggested above, they often create fake model agencies, film production studios, and marriage agencies for the purposes of recruitment and to cover the crime. In many cases, victims find themselves abroad, locked in apartments, with their passports confiscated by traffickers who coerce them to work in prostitution under threats, use of force, abuse and rape. Very often, the victims are promised their freedom only after earning their purchase price, as well as their travel and visa costs, through prostitution([7]).

3-The Effects of Human Exploitation on the Country:

         Human exploitation has a lot of parts and every part are  harmful . Not only human  beings are having unrecoverable hurts , but also it causes serious financial and administrative problems on the countries .

It harms especially human and together with this it also harms the countries. The effects are briefly summarized as below :

A – Existing market for prostitution and labor would be damaged.

B – Organized crimes are also going to increase and variation is going to increase also.

C – Economic stability would be damaged with the increase in anti-money laundering.

D – Demographic stability would be damaged.

E – Corruption in government sector would increase at any condition.

F – Domestic economical investment stability would be damaged.

4 – Side Effects of Human Exploitation on Victims:

     People who are removed from all their home cities, all their families and all their loves are being introduced in a new culture , sometimes with their wills and sometimes with force. For these people, the missing the home or the change in the country are not the problems. Problem for the victims are a lot deeper and more traumatic. The problems which Human exploitation victims are faced and still being faced is summarized below as :( 8 )

A – They are all alone in a different country .

B – They are not in contact with the people they know them .

C – They can’t  tell their situation in the country they are in living inside .

D – Their passports are bereaved and they get their passports back when they move outside of the country and when they are coming back they give their passports back .

E – They are not able to be in contact with their families .

F – The mobile phones which they are using are not letting them to have international phone calls.

G – Because of moving a lot they don’t have the right understanding of directions. They do not know where they are or where the exact location is . They are exploited repeatedly either sexually or physically and they are abused by merchants .

H – They are forced to sign a contract and they are landed so much money by force .And they are convinced to believe whatever they are doing is wrong and they are frightened of going into prison.

I – They are being curious because of the fact that their situation may be informed to the people they know. Every day they are being obliged to have dangerous sexual relations with their clients with having no protection and no safety.

J- Regarding the escape, they are being told to have them or their families hurt .

Second: Prostitution and trafficking in Iraq: Background information:

  The  stricter laws surrounding prostitution in source contrast marked it an illegal activity in these countries and , one would expect that prostitution commands a higher return an illegal market rather than a legal one to compensate for the risk of getting caught and punished( [8])

   This section describes the context of prostitution and trafficking in the modern times in Iraq ; with special focus to laws, social and political circumstances relevant to this issue .

( A ) :  A. K. Qassim period during 1958-1963 :

Within a turbulent progressive scene, this period was resilient with prostitution and practiced a policy of regulation for the “trade”. Recommendations were given to seclude prostitution into special zone while providing medical services for the women in the industry. There was a strong women’s movement on the ground , albeit a leftist one, that did not specifically advocate women’s human rights. Demands of general access to education and work prevailed while social demands connected to women’s sexuality or bodily integrity were not included in the mainstream political agenda  . 

(B)  : Baath Regime Period before economic sanctions (1963-1991):

There were great contradictions during the Baath Regime era. On the one hand, it was a ruthless unprecedented dictatorship in the modern times of Iraq. On the other hand, the political system advanced modernity, socialism and secularism. This period was affected also by incredible financial wealth as the result of nationalized oil resulting in economic stability and relative prosperity. This prosperity made Iraq attractive to small numbers of traffickers from other parts of the world, but Iraqi women were rarely prostituted unless in secluded gypsy gatherings\settlements.

     Baath regime laws made prostitution illegal. Article 3 in the anti-prostitution law resulted in six months prison time for convictions for brokerage, while Article 4 gave three months of

Imprisonment for prostitutes. In a repeated prostitution case, the imprisonment becomes one year.

The punishment for prostitution was minor compared with neighboring countries with more brutal laws and regulations. Moreover, there were provisions for rehabilitation houses for prostitutes with the state maintaining those facilities.

Night clubs and adult entertainment were legal and employed women coming from Egypt, the Philippines, and other countries, as well as some local women.

  Gypsy gatherings\settlements (Ghajar) were known to host parties for officials and sheikhs and offer them sexual services afterwards. They were in many locations around Iraq such as Abu Ghraib, Kamaliya, Diwaniah, old part of Basra, Shummali in Kut, Al Dawassa in Mosul, Touz in Kirkuk, Al Hussein district in Kerbala, and Al Zahra’ district in Hilla. The Karaj are also similar in nature to the gypsies, but they prostitute through begging money and not through entertainment.

The Ba’ath regime attempted building them residential complexes with schools such as Hay Al Rissala. The main idea was that education will help this population to resort to other ways for a living, and will create awareness against the sex-industry.

(C ): Baath Period during Economic Sanctions 1991-2003

Although the economic sanctions were designed to overthrow Sadam’s Baath regime, the main result was unprecedented poverty for the people. The poverty also rendered them helpless against the ruling party.

An alarming increase in prostitution started during the first years of imposing Economic Sanctions of the nineties, to become epidemic numbers in 1994. A starvation-style economy

translated into exploitation of women in workplaces. Although women were a big part of the public work force, their monthly salary became equivalent to few dollars. A huge population of widowed single mothers started to practice individual and hidden prostitution in workplace or in neighborhoods for survival.

(D): Faith Campaign: “Cleansing” the society through mass executions of prostitution The years of 1994-1998 reflected a massive practice of oppression against women.

Numbers of “honor-killings” rose to their highest rates in the modern history of Iraq. While the numbers are not documented in central and southern Iraq, the Kurdish north, and no-fly zone then, had relative freedom in documenting, and the result was, as documented by a local group 9000 honor-killings within nine years. In parallel, “Sadam Husein” flirted with rising powers of Islamism in the region. The faith campaign followed in October 2000. Almost 200 Iraqi women were publicly executed by the Fedaeyin Sadam (Sadam’s guerillas) for claims of prostitution. While it is reported that some of these women were political, most of them were known to have practiced Prostitution .

( E )Honor crimes in Iraq:

Honor crimes which predominantly take the form of honor killing are committed against women in Iraq by family or community members  as a way to restore collective honor reports  highlight that honor killing remain a serious problem throughout  all parts of Iraq and are often arranged to appear as suicides .As a result and numbers generated with regard to honor crimes are grossly inaccurate and do not reflect the severity of the situation ([9]).

( F ) : Migrant smuggling:-

Is defined as the fulfillment  of illegal entry of a person into a country of which the person is not a national or a permanent resident. Illegal entry means crossing borders without complying with the necessary requirement for legal entry into the relevant country ([10]).

( G ) :Post –war abductions and assaults against women

Ousting the government and all systems of security left Iraqi cities vulnerable in the following months to gangs of men who kidnapped women and girls and assaulted them sexually.

It was noticed that kidnappings increased especially in the capital Baghdad. Houses which “stored” girls before selling them to other countries were found in 2004. Borders with other countries were in a state of chaos and made easy the trafficking of kidnapped or deportation the females to Syria and other neighboring countries. In 2004 OWFI held weekly meetings with volunteer women from many parts of the city of Baghdad and attempted to estimate the numbers of abductees. OWFI knew little about trafficking at that time.

( H )  : ” Rising the criminals” crack down on prostitution: Al Battaween’s blood path

1- “Cry from Kurdistan” was written by the Independent Women’s Organization, a secular group which opened the first

shelter for women in Kurdistan in the late 1990’s.

2 -OWFI’s weekly membership meetings reported as many as ten kidnappings from different parts of the city.

3- As indicated in a Human Rights Report.

After the religious parties took control of the Ministry of Interior, they openly managed mass killings of prostitutes in Al Battaween district in central Baghdad . On July 2006, Amal Kashkool

witnessed the execution of six women and one man of Al Battaween. A bullet was fired into the back of the head and a second then fired into the victim’s back. Seven intelligence cars (Batta) brought the criminal group members to Ally 7 in Al Battaween. Those militia members then performed group-honor killing executions.

Although small and medium sized brothels spread all over Baghdad by 2005-2006, Al Battaween district – a mix of light industrial and residential slum – has surpassed them all in housing the most populated and inhumane brothels.

( I ) : Crimes and punishment against prostitution

Prostitution is illegal under Iraqi law, where a prostitute is detained for 3-4 months, while solicitors get longer imprisonment periods. Police raids are administered on brothels, but most escape using a watch system and mobile phones. Almost half the women in the central women’s prison of Kadthimiya are convicted under “prostitution”.

In the previous regime, the law included reform houses in which the convicted women would be sent, but these houses no longer exist.

Mass killings of women took place in the southern cities of Basra and Umara between 2006-2008. Although some of them may have been accused of prostitution, the verdict was spread to include unveiled and made up women. It was enough for any vigilante to say that she was not good and the case would be closed immediately ([11]).

Third: Human trafficking and the rise of sex trafficking in Iraq :

The new opportunities for trafficking  are : ([12])

1-The advertising and recruitment of sexual services via the internet.

2-mall-order brides and dating services.

3-child sex tourism.

4-trafficking child soldier.

5-trafficking during time of war and civil unrest ,especially in post –war trafficking ear.

6- sporting events ,such as what happened in Germany during the world soccer up in 2006,which estimates up 40,000 foreign prostitutes among them trafficked victims being forced into prostitution directly.

7-natural disasters alone with wars aids ,asking orphans of children which increases their dependency on others, and the risk that they will fall in prey to trafficker ,such following the tsunami on December,26-2004 that destroyed much of the coastal areas of Indonesia ,sir lanka . thailand and India-united nations children s fund (unicef) reported cases of child trafficking out of Aceh province in Indonesia.

-research shows that one of the most vulnerable populations for trafficking are refugee populations that fled instability and violence in Iraq from 2003 to 2007 according the conference paper prepared for the women sliding for an implement and unified Iraq conference held April of 2011 ([13]) .

       Iraqi law defines prostitution, adultery and sodomy offenses, the way in which these  and defined reflect norms that govern the status and representation of women in Iraqi society ,relationship between women and men ,and ideas about and practices of raped are charged with adultery or where women who engage in sex outside of marriage are accused of being in prostitution, then not only men but women internalize these norms after 2003 . ([14])

The Iraq war has produced a massive wave of refugees, It is estimated that approximately 2 million refugees have fled the county, primarily to Syria and Jordan, a displacement identified as the largest displacement of people in the middle east since 1948.

In addition ,the conflict has produced an estimated two million in internally displaced persons, other estimates include an additional quarter million Iraqis have fled from central and southern Iraq to areas under the administration of the Kurdistan regional government([15]).

   Iraq is both a source and destination country for men, women and children trafficked for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation and involuntary servitude .Iraqi women and girls, some as young as 11 years old ,are subjected to conditions of human  trafficking within the  country  are subjected  to conditions of human trafficking within the country and in Syria ,Lebanon, Jordan, Kuwait ,the united  Arab Emirates, turkey, Iran, and possibly Yemen, for faced prostitution and sexual exploitation within households . in some case, women are lured in to forced sexual exploitation through false promises of work. the more prevalent means of human trafficking is through sale or forced marriage. Family members have coerced girls and women into prostitution to escape from desperate economic circumstances, to pay debts, or to resolve disputes between families. Some women and girls are trafficked within Iraq for the purpose of sexual exploitation through the traditional institution of temporary marriages(muta a).Under this arrangement ,the family receives a dowry from the husband and the marriage is terminated after a specified period. Iraqi males have also taken advantage of (muta a)to traffic multiple women into other Iraqi provinces or neighboring countries, especially Syria, for the purposes of forced prostitution([16]).

 But the trafficking and sex exploitation by  treatment necessary measures are :

1-preventing trafficking through one of its stages: city of origin, transportation links –gateways-city-country of destination.

2-establishing governmental legal aid for trafficked females.

3-supporting victims of trafficking-prostitution and their children with adequate social insurance plans and health services.

4-ultimately ,eradication of prostitution can only happen in a different socio-political situation.

5-clarifying definition of the female victims human rights as opposed to local prevailing concepts evil filthy women who spread adultery.

6-introducing a new set of terminology which is less discriminatory for the victims ([17]).

        Forth : Human trafficking : The government responses  :

    The first positive sign for Iraq is that Iraq’s new Constitution, passed in 2005, specifically prohibits forced labor, slavery, slave trade, trafficking in women or children, and sex trade. Secondly, Iraq has ratified the Convention against Transnational Organized Crime on 17 March 2008 and ratified the Trafficking Protocol on 9 February, 2009. Iraq did not raise any objections on any provisions of either the Convention or its supplementary Trafficking Protocol and thus is now bound by certain obligations to trafficked persons, under international law.

Iraq has further taken additional steps to integrate itself on the international stage. The Iraqi government has taken an initiative and signed an International Compact with the United Nations Through the UN Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) to establish a new partnership with the international community to help lay the foundations for a unified, democratic and federal state.

The Compact includes a number of pledges which Iraq is working to fulfill, with the assistance of the international community. Some of the pledges include, inter alia, applying international Human rights norms and standards in domestic courts, capacity building to help Iraq meet its human rights treaty obligations, and establish a national human rights institution ([18]).

      The Iraqi constitution prohibits the trafficking of women and children, and prostitution is a  criminal offense. A prostitute can be imprisoned for three or four months while pimps risk a more severe punishment, including the death penalty. They are often family members who have  forced their daughters or wives into sex trafficking and prostitution to escape a desperate economic situation (for payment of debts) or to resolve a dispute between families. Women and  young girls sold into prostitution have few if any recourse; if they do escape and try to find  assistance from the police, they are often accused of crimes because they are in possession of  forged passports or because they were forced by their captors to commit unlawful acts.

 The little effort that the Iraqi government has recently expended in fighting against the skyrocketing cases of sex trafficking has caused a scandal. Despite submitting a bill in 2009 that provides for stiffer penalties to those accused of trafficking, the United States Department of State notes that the Iraqi government made no progress in eradicating this form of sexual exploitation: either by using existing laws to punish the guilty, or by identifying and protecting victims.41 In addition, because human trafficking is not seen as an established crime in Iraq , the government does not encourage victims to assist in an investigations or prosecution .(19 )

Fifth : Legislative and Police Measures and the prohibition:

The section two of Iraqi permanent constitution 2005,so.called rights and liberties, especially chapter one ,in third :of article 29,enacted that economic exploitation of children shall be completely prohibited .the state shall take necessary measures to protect them([19]).

-chapter two ,so-called –liberties, especially ,in third of article  ( 37 )Enacted compulsory service –unpaid labor, serfdom, slave trade –slavery, trafficking of women and children and the sex trade is prohibited ([20]).

 – An international  and national prohibition :-

 Internationally the article (4) of the universal declaration for human rights of 1948 mentioned that no one shall be in slavery or servitude or serfdom ([21]).

Especially, that united nations as an international organization has divided exploitation into sexual and labor exploitation. It considered as organized crime. But the national measures for prohibiting all crimes concerning with the subject as  the following of :

A -Amendment all existing discriminatory laws that promote violence against women as :

1-Amend Art. 398, No. 111, of the Iraqi Penal Code of 1969 that exempts the defendant in rape and sexual assault cases if he marries the victim. Under current law, the victim is forced to live with her rapist for three years at which point he can divorce her.

2-Amend Art. 409, No. 111, which provides for lenient sentences for men who kill their wives or female relatives for alleged adulterous offenses, thereby minimizing this crime against women.

3- Pass legislation against domestic violence that criminalizes those who batter.

4-Amend the prostitution law of 1988 that criminalizes women, and that associates prostitution with adultery and sodomy.

5-pimps and traffickers, penalize those who purchase sexual activities, and provide assistance to victims. Penalties should also apply to those who pimp and purchase women via the Internet.

6-Adopt the UN policy prohibiting the purchase of sexual activities by Iraqi military, police, and related personnel. Extend this policy to all government authorities in the country and personnel who travel abroad.

 B – Security Measures That Protect Women such as  :

Create appropriate mechanisms for protecting women from the various forms of violence against women, including prostitution and sex trafficking:

1-Urge international organizations working in Iraq to support the establishment of safe shelters in the country and the training of staff to provide services for women.

2-Establish centers where victims of violence against women, including women who have been victims of trafficking and prostitution, can obtain health care, psychological support, legal .counseling, employment training and financial aid …

3-Monitor penal institutions to ensure that no women languish in jail for charges of prostitution and adultery, and ensure that women’s human rights are upheld in these contexts.

4-Renew and strengthen currently existing procedures, such as social welfare remuneration  and create new mechanisms for supporting poor families, especially those headed by women .

5-Establish witness protection programs that enable victims of violence against women, including trafficking and prostitution, to file complaints with the police in safe and secure settings and give voluntary testimony against their perpetrators.

 C – Measures Preventing Violence against Women such as :

1-Collaborate and coordinate with governments and NGOs in the region to combat trafficking and prostitution in order to prevent the victimization and victimization of women and girls.

2-Establish a database of traffickers and their known modes and countries of operation.

3-Train judges, prosecutors and police in policies and programs that address violence against women.

4-Activate the role of NGOs in preventing violence against women, including trafficking and prostitution, by creating information and awareness raising programs that educate potential or actual victims, as well as potential and actual offenders, and civil society .

5-Encourage media to play a role in preventing violence against women, including trafficking and prostitution, by not blaming women for their own exploitation; and by making the perpetrators, including pimps, traffickers and buyers, visible and Promoting articles and programs that de-construct sexist stereotypes of violated women and that encourage, meaningful discussion and strategies ([22]). 

Sixth: Legislative procedures:

We should be accomplished specific objectives such as:

1-Strengthen the efficiency and credibility of the criminal justice system and enhance the rule of law.

2- Improving service delivery through better planning and implementation processes at an internal level.

3-Empowering ethical policing by governmental institutions.

4-building a capacity of police and judiciary towards the efficient of human trafficking and the protection of human rights and dignity.

5-making an obligations and activities to protect victims and to prevent the crime prosecute perpetrators and cooperate with international-regional interlocutors and remain committed to continue supporting Iraqi institutions to eliminating one of the worst crimes and gross human rights abuses in history([23]).

  • The Islamic State ( ISIS ) and Yazidi question :

 The yazidi religions minority community in Iraq inflicted a huge attack, from the so-called Islamic state (ISIS),especially in sinjar mountain where many of yazidis are being used as sex slaves. few of them have managed to escape, then they told about their harrowing stories after the downfall the Mosul province in 9-10 June in sinjar there were 200 women and girls ,these were slave markets, Is fighters could come to take them forcibly .An(IS)pamphlet instructs fighters about sexual activity with female captives.(IS)itself has not tried to hide what it has done? as well as the pamphlet and video pictures proved that. Therefore ,most of the trapped people are members of the yazidi religion one of Iraqis oldest minority and they were forced to flee to mount sinjar in north-west of Iraq and force slaughter by an encircling of (IS).the united-nation ,ascertained that roughly (40,000)people many women and children have taken as a refugees, and estimates of (700,000) of yazidis concentrated at this region, in addition to that at least (500) of the yazidis including (40)children have been killed and roughly of (130,000)of the yazidis fled to Kurdistan in north of Iraq ([24]).

Iraqi criminal code, Article (427)  , pursued   gender-based violence ((GBV)) is pervasive in Iraq. Rape and sexual assault, while criminalizes in the penal code no-111 of 1969, continue to be met with apathy, impunity prevails. The criminal code states that perpetrators of crimes involving sexual violence may be exonerated, if they marry their victim ([25]).

Trafficking crimes penalties – according to Iraq-penal code No-111.of 1969. 

Penal code reference Descriptions Punishment or sentence
Article 380 and article 385 Incitement to commit adultery and  then carnal knowledge of minors . Non for article 380 and for article 385 max . penalty of 10 year
Article 393 Rape Max. penalty of   15 year
Article 394 Sexual intercourse with a minor between   15 – 18 years of age Max . 7 year
Article 394 Sexual assault of adult Max . 7 year
Article 396 ( 2 ) Sexual assault of minor Max . 10 year
Article 397 Sexual assault of minor without the use of force Max . 7 year
Article 397 Incitement to fornication or prostitutions of a minor Max . 10 year
Article 421 Kidnapping Max . 10 year
Article 422 Kidnapping of minor Without force 10 year with force 15 year
Article 423 Kidnapping of women  Without force 15   with force death penalty , sexual ,   assaulted
Article 424 Kidnapping resulting in death Life or penalty death
Section 3 , 4 Bagha ,promoting prostitution  
Section 1 , 8 Jawazat , unlawful marriage  
Ahwal al – shakh siya Personal status law violations  


 source : Linda lavender, trafficking in Iraq: 2003 and beyond civil –milting fusion center, Mediterranean basin team-may-2012, p8. 

  • The Iraqi parliament after too much debated and select modifications to the proposed trafficking bill pursed the legislation unanimously into  law  on February  of 2012 as we researched precisely  below : –  

Iraq trafficking in persons penal code  of 2012 promulgated by Iraqi parliament as illustration below : 

Conviction  Monetary penalty Incarceration


Human trafficking .  5 – 10 million Iraqi dinars Temporary imprisonment
Human trafficking with my form of coercion including blackmail ,threat, and /or  confiscation of official document .  

Up to 10 million Iraqi dinars .

Imprisonment up to 15 years .
Human trafficking with use of means fraudulent or means of deceive victims . Up to 10 million Iraqi dinars . Imprisonment up to 15 years .
 Human trafficking-with the giving or receiving of money or privileges in exchange for authority or guardianship over the victim.  Up to 10 million Iraqi dinars . Imprisonment up to 15 years .


Source : Linda lavender, trafficking in Iraq: 2003 and beyond civil –milting fusion center, Mediterranean basin team-may-2012 , p ,9 . 

-Article -6- of Iraqi trafficking in persons penal code- of 2012 putted monetary penalty not less than -15- million Iraqi dinars and the incarceration penalty for life imprisonment in cases such as : ([26])

1-human trafficking when the victim is under 18 year of age ,or female or disabled.

2- Human trafficking by an organized crime group or of an international nature.

3-human trafficking with the use of kidnapping and /or torture.

4-human trafficking, the perpetrators is an immediate or second relative, guardian or spouse of the victim.

5- Human trafficking resulted in terminal illness or permanent disability to the victim.

6- Human trafficking affected multiple persons or if occurring multiple times.

7- Human trafficking affected by a government employee  or a person commissioned to public service.

8- Human trafficking, exploitation of influence or a victims weakness or need.

 According to article –of Iraqi trafficking in persons penal code of 2012 putted monetary  penalty minimum to 10 million Iraqi dinars and the incarceration for minimum -3- years imprisonment in cases such as:

A-human trafficking ,established or managed a website to engage trafficking .

B- human trafficking ,engaged or facilitated a human trafficking ,contract by using the internet.

The article-5- of the same above legislation has limited the human trafficking crime which leads to death of the victim to be the penalty of capital punishment ([27])

The supreme committee to combat human trafficking as an inter – ministerial committee composed of members from the ministers of human rights and ministry of foreign affairs and the ministry of labor and social affairs , continued to serve as a coordinating structure ( Body ) on  human trafficking issues ; through it wielded for implementing its recommendations . ( 28 )

Conclusions and recommendations:  

 The research of this phenomenon has been focused on the trafficking crimes and sexual exploitation to be forced prostitution and sex-trade of impoverished Iraqi women and girls and children-so that this article is looked growing of number victims all over the world ,especially in underdeveloped countries and till developed countries alike. But the circumstances of Iraq reflected the desire to thrive by traffickers, specifically after consequences of invasion Iraq in 2003 by U.S.A and its allies .so that the incentive was being gained profitable business.

The relation of human trafficking with poverty and social circumstances id an essential element to understanding the causes of this phenomenon .It should be made  a priority to explain and analysis from the countries origin –additionally ,the cultural gap between the societies from where victims of human trafficking originate and the region where they are brought in this case-study. despite of conservative countries ( Arab countries) that should not be under areal statistics of human trafficking and sexual exploitation as a subject of the research .

So that ,we could be given specific recommendations pertaining with this research such as:

1-we must continue to use anti-trafficking procedures ,which enacted according to the law.

2-we must be doing well-outlines to refer for trafficking victims to meet protection services.

3-Enforcement a public –policy to provide punishments rigidly for these crimes which being related to trafficking and exploitation.

4- Establishing legal framework to prohibiting this kind of organized crimes .

5-taking into account a decisive steps for ending all forms up these crime addition to that raising awareness and enforcement effective comprehensive action plan for prohibition .

6-preventing the phenomenon by supporting advanced internationally and regionally.

7-protecting the victims from future harm.

8-prosecuting the violators by demonstrating minimal efforts to ensure that victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation .

[1] – Antonio Maria Costa, Strategies Against Human Trafficking: The Role of the Security Sector, National Defense Academy and Austrian Ministry of Defense , Report Vienna, September 2009.p5.

[2] – the protocol to prevent ,suppress and punish trafficking in persons ,Especially women and children: supplementing the UN conventional against transnational organized crime,art3,dec.25,2003, Ali Ahawi , human trafficking :Iraq-A case study, http://works/,

[3] -Bruce A . forster, human trafficking :A transitional organized criminal activity, American international journal of contemporary research,vol.,no.1,jounory ,2013,p.1.

[4] – Cornelius Friesendorf ,Strategies Against Human Trafficking: The Role of the Security Sector, The Security Sector and Counter-Trafficking ,National Defense Academy and Austrian Ministry of Defense , Report Vienna, September 2009 ,pp . 22-23.

[5] -Alexis A.Aronwitz and  Elif Isitman, trafficking of human being for the purpose of organ removal :Are- international-legal instruments effective measures to eradicate the practice ?Groningen Journal of international law , vol  .1,no.2 , 2013 , p.84.

[6] -Frank Laczko and elzbieta gozdiak and (others),data and research on human trafficking: global survey ,international organization for migration (Iom)-UN .vol , no .1-2 , 2005 , P .6 .

[7] — Francesca Boaco, Vitoria Luda di Cortemiglia, Anvar Serojitdinov, Human Trafficking Patterns, The Security Sector and Counter-Trafficking ,National Defense Academy and Austrian Ministry of Defense and Sports, Report Vienna, September 2009 ,p49.

[8] -Rana al k.q.Akee and (others)  ethnic fragmentation ,conflict ,displaced persons and human trafficking: an empirical analysis, institute for the study of labor ( ,Germany , 2010.p.8.

[9] -violence and discrimination against women in Iraq ,human rights council ,UPR, new York, October 217-2014,p.10.

[10] -Rebecca L.wharton,Anew paradigm for human trafficking : shifting the focus from prostitution to exploitation in the trafficking victims protection act, William &Mary journal of women and the law ,v. 16 ,issue . 3 , 2010 , p  , 755 .

[11] – OwfI ,prostitution and trafficking of women and girls in Iraq,csw54th,session-Nyc,march 5 –  2010 , pp4-7.

[12] -Alexis A. Aronowitz,human trafficking ,human misery, the global trade in human beings . global crime and justice,London,2009,pp.129-142.

[13] -Linda Lavender ,human trafficking in Iraq :2003 and beyond ,civil-military fusion center, Mediterranean basin team.may-2012,p.7.

[14] – Norwegian church ,trafficking ,sexual exploitation and prostitution of women and girls in Iraq, ,April 2010,p17.

[15] – Ali Ahawi,human trafficking :Iraq-A case study, http://works/, p,1.

[16] – United states department of state, trafficking in persons report 2010 –Iraq,14 June 2010 ,available at:, p,1.

[17] – OwfI , prostitution and trafficking of women and girls in Iraq , csw54th , session n-Nyc,march 5,2010,pp23-24.

[18] — Ali Ahawi , Op, Cit , p . 15.

[19] -Iraqi permanent constitution of 2005,article 29.

[20] -Ibid, Article 35.

[21] -the universal declaration of human rights,1948,Article-4.

[22] – Norwegian  church. Op , Cit ,pp, 23-25 .

[23] -Dr. Koran Murphy, experience teaches human rights and gender in Iraq, the European union integrated rule of law mission for Iraq .www.consilium,Eu/just lex.pp.4-16.

[24] -Raya Jalabi , who are the yazidis and why ISIs hunting them? www. the .11 august -2014.pp.1-2 and yazidi compare with panel wood, Islamic state: women tell of sex slavery trauma .www.b.b.c , news . 22 – 12- 2014, pp-1-7.

[25] -Violence and discrimination against women in Iraq ,human rights council,9upp),new york, October 217-novermber 7-2014 , p .4.

[26] -Linda lavender, trafficking  in Iraqi: 2003 and beyond ,civil- military fusion center, Mediterranean basin team,may-2012,pp 9-10.

[27] – Ibid , p  . 10 .

28 – look at , http : // en – Wikipedia . org , 2010 , p , 1 .

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