Life still difficult for Iraqis

New report finds journalists, activists and minorities at risk of violence.

    This time seven years ago, George W Bush, the former US president, was preparing his famous speech declaring "mission accomplished" in Iraq.

    But today, violence is still the norm for many Iraqis.

    Amnesty International says hundreds of people are still killed and maimed every month.

    A new reporthas found that those who speak out, like human rights campaigners or journalists, face constant danger. Religious and ethnic minorities, women, gay men and refugees also all live with the fear they will be battered or killed.

    Armed groups linked to al-Qaeda and political militias are often responsible. Some have links to Iraqi politicians, like the Mahdi army of Moqtada al-Sadr, the Shia religious leader.

    The report criticises political and religious leaders for failing to stop the violence, or even investigate it properly. Often, it says, officials are actually involved in beatings and killings.

    So, for many Iraqis, life is tough, and fear is constant, as Sanaa Hussein Abdullah, a widow, tells Al Jazeera in her own words.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


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