ASIA/IRAQ - UN Mission in Iraq: without respect for minorities, there is no democracy

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Baghdad (Agenzia Fides) - "All too commonly non-majority communities suffer from multiple forms of discrimination and marginalization that detrimentally affect their full and equal participation in the political, economic and social life of the Country. And without full respect of the rights of different communities, democracy in Iraq will not arrive". This is what the Hungarian Yorgy Busztin, deputy representative of the UN Secretary General for Iraq said at the launch of what may be the first ever Conference on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Iraqi's Diverse Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Comunities held in Baghdad, organized by UNAMI Human Rights Office, which began Wednesday, March 26, in partnership with the Alliance for Iraqi Minorities (AIM) and brings together 60 participants representing all of Iraq's diverse ethnic, cultural and religious communities. All minority groups - said Busztin - "are essential components of the Iraqi people and deserve protection and respect".
Local sources told Fides Agency that the discussions will focus on key issues affecting their communities and will agree on a roadmap for legal, institutional and policy reforms aimed at ensuring their protection and enhancing respect for their full and equal participation in the political, economic, social and cultural life of the Country. It is also envisaged that the Conference will adopt a Declaration on Principles on the rights and fundamental freedoms of Iraq's minority communities. The roadmap and the declaration of principles will serve as the key platform for advocacy with the incoming Government following the general elections to be held end April 2014. (GV) (Agenzia Fides 27/03/2014)