Increasing Islamic fundamentalism in Iraq puts women at particular risk: in many areas, Islamic militants patrol the streets, beating and harassing women who are not “properly” dressed or behaved. Instability has created an escalation in rapes, triggering an increase in “honor killings," in which male relatives murder rape-survivors because the attack has “shamed” the family. The shelters provide safety and a future for women and girls who are under threat of this kind of violence.
The network of shelters provides women and their children with secure transport; food; clothes; healthcare; security; counseling; and political training for them to assert greater political power and respond effectively to increasing fundamentalism.
Through this project, MADRE and OWFI aim to protect hundreds of women from violence and equip them with the tools, not only to rebuild their own lives, but to contribute to the struggle against the repression of women’s rights in Iraq.