Tag Archives: Iraq

Iraq: Rights lawyer Ali Jaseb Hattab Al Heliji disappeared since arrest in Amarah on October 8, 2019

08/10/21

On October 8, 2019, human rights lawyer Ali Jaseb Hattab Al Heliji went to the southern city of Amarah to meet one of his clients. However, shortly after arriving at the rendezvous point, he was arrested by members of the Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU). As a lawyer, Al Heliji had represented several demonstrators arrested in connection with the anti-government October demonstrations. On March 10, 2021, his father was assasinated in the city of Amarah.

Ali Jaseb Hattab Al Heliji is a human rights lawyer representing demonstrators arrested in connection with the recent anti-government demonstrations. On October 1, 2019, protests started in Baghdad and southern cities calling for improved services and more action to curb corruption. The demonstrations were met by excessive and unnecessary lethal force by Iraqi security forces and have resulted in a hundred people killed and about 4000 injured.

On October 6, 2019, two armed men from the PMU came to Ali Jaseb Hattab’s home to warn him from speaking out on Facebook about the killing of protesters and to stop accusing certain factions of the PMU of being responsible for these killings. The armed men then threatened Ali Jaseb Hattab that they would kill him if he did not stop.

On October 8, 2019, Ali Jaseb Hattab received a call from one of his clients who wanted to meet. The two men were supposed to meet in the southern city of Amara in the Missan province. However, when Al Heliji arrived at the rendezvous point, armed men in two black pick-up trucks belonging to the Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU) dragged him away from his car, where he stood speaking to his client, and then drove him away in one of the trucks. When Ali Jaseb Hattab’s relatives reported his abduction, local security forces told them that they were not aware of his arrest. His fate and whereabouts remain unknown to date.

On March 10, 2021, Ali Jaseb Hattab’s father, Jaseb Hattab Al Heliji, was shot dead in the city of Amarah, in the Iraqi governorate of Maysan. He was a vocal advocate for his son, constantly calling for his release and for criminal sanctions against the parties responsible for his disappearance.

[…]

https://www.menarights.org/en/caseprofile/human-rights-lawyer-ali-jasib-hattab-al-heliji-disappeared-arrest-amarah-october-8-2019

https://www.gc4hr.org/news/view/2636

https://www.amnesty.de/mitmachen/urgent-action/irak-menschenrechtsanwalt-weiterhin-verschwunden-2020-11-06 (DEUTSCH)

Lebanon/France: Khalaf aux magistrats : Unissons-nous pour faire trembler les responsables de nos malheurs

13/07/21

Khalaf aux magistrats : Unissons-nous pour faire trembler les responsables de nos malheurs

Des représentants de barreaux arabes et européens ont participé au « Jour de la solidarité » avec les avocats libanais.

« Magistrats du Liban, je vous lance un appel solennel, en prenant à témoin mes confrères du monde : assainissons nos relations, faisons trembler ceux qui sont responsables de nos malheurs. Tant que nous ne serons pas unis, ceux-là mêmes qui ont tué, pillé sans vergogne, qui se croient au-dessus des lois et pensent pouvoir échapper indéfiniment à la justice, gagneront, alors que le Liban perdra. » C’est un véritable cri d’alarme qu’a lancé hier le bâtonnier de Beyrouth, Melhem Khalaf, à une magistrature qu’il décrit « comme hautaine et soumise ».

Me Khalaf a tenu ces propos lors du Jour de solidarité internationale avec le barreau de Beyrouth, organisé par le conseil de l’ordre des avocats dans la salle des pas perdus du Palais de justice, avec la participation de Mohammad Mrad, bâtonnier de Tripoli, de 12 représentants de barreaux arabes et européens, notamment français, ainsi que de nombreux avocats. Le conseil de l’ordre croise le fer avec le corps de la magistrature depuis le 28 mai dernier. Ce jour-là, il avait décrété une grève après l’arrestation de l’avocat et activiste Rami Alleik, appréhendé avec violence en pleine rue pour avoir refusé de se présenter devant les services de renseignements des Forces de sécurité intérieure (FSI), à la suite de la plainte déposée par le Conseil supérieur de la magistrature (CSM) pour outrage à la magistrature. Malgré le mouvement de contestation qui avait suivi, Me Alleik avait été détenu pendant plusieurs jours avant d’être libéré à la condition de ne pas exercer pendant deux mois. Considérant qu’il lui revient seul de prendre de telles mesures, le conseil de l’ordre avait poursuivi sa grève, à laquelle il n’a toujours pas mis un terme, pour exprimer son « ras-le-bol contre une violation des lois et un glissement vers l’État policier ». L’événement organisé hier s’inscrit dans le cadre plus large du « grand soulèvement » lancé par le conseil de l’ordre en même temps que la grève. Parmi les responsables des ordres étrangers à avoir répondu à cet appel, Dominique Attias, présidente de la fédération des barreaux d’Europe, Hélène Fontaine, présidente de la Conférence des bâtonniers de France et d’Outre-Mer, Jérôme Gavaudan, président du Conseil national des barreaux de France, Martin Pradel, membre du Conseil national des barreaux de France, Raja Attia, président de l’Union des avocats arabes et bâtonnier du barreau égyptien, Dhiyaa al-Saadi, bâtonnier de la République d’Irak, Marie-Aimée Peyron, vice-présidente du Conseil national des barreaux et qui représentait le barreau de Paris, Serge Deygas, bâtonnier de Lyon, Nicolas Bedel de Buzarengues, bâtonnier de Montpellier, Amine Faraj, membre du conseil de l’ordre de Montpellier, Vincent Maurel, représentant du bâtonnier des Hauts-de-Seine.

[…]

https://www.lorientlejour.com/article/1268292/khalaf-aux-magistrats-unissons-nous-pour-faire-trembler-les-responsables-de-nos-malheurs.html

https://www.lefigaro.fr/vox/monde/liban-les-avocats-sont-les-derniers-garants-de-l-etat-de-droit-20210712

https://www.cnb.avocat.fr/fr/actualites/consultez-le-grand-entretien-du-cnb-en-replay

Iraq: One day after the assassination of their colleague, lawyers in Basra stage a demonstration

11/07/21

A group of Basra lawyers organized a demonstration in the aftermath of the assassination of the attorney at law, Haidar Naji al-Mousawi.

Shafaq News Agency correspondent said that the lawyers demanded justice for their “Martyred colleague”, detering unrestrained arms, and prohibiting arms outside the state forces.

Financial disputes between the uncle of the victim and a group of people to whom he owes money was the motive of the crime, according to the chief of Basra’s Bar Association, Abdul Reda al-Attar.

https://shafaq.com/en/Iraq-News/One-day-after-the-assassination-of-their-colleague-lawyers-in-Basra-stage-a-demonstration

https://iraq.liveuamap.com/en/2021/10-july-lawyer-haider-alnaji-almousawi-was-assassinated-moments

https://shafaq.com/ku/All-News/In-mysterious-circumstances-lawyer-assassinated-in-Basra

Lebanon: 12 juillet 2021 Journée de solidarité avec le Barreau de Beyrouth

12/07/21

May be an image of text

https://bba24.org/events/solidarite1272021/#b3093

https://www.lefigaro.fr/vox/monde/liban-les-avocats-sont-les-derniers-garants-de-l-etat-de-droit-20210712

May be an image of 1 person and text that says "#GrandEntretienDuCNB: Liban, avocats en danger "On se sent dans le collimateur de ce système policier qui au lieu que le juge gère la police judiciaire, c'est la police judiciaire qui gère les juges. On est pris entre une classe politique irresponsable, des organes sécuritaires qui ont une mainmise sur l'Etat et les institutions et veulent casser la volonté des avocats. C'est le dernier rempart pour la sauvegarde des droits de l'homme, des libertés fondamentales. Si l'avocat tombe, c'est le citoyen qui tombe." Melhem KHALAF Bâtonnier de 'Ordre des avocats de Beyrouth SAVOCATS"
BBA

Iraq: Iraqi lawyer speaks of detention for ‘insulting authorities’

24/03/21

Ibrahim al-Sumaida'i was arrested on Friday. Photo: Facebook

An Iraqi lawyer and activist has spoken of his detention on allegations of “insulting public authorities” after his release on Monday. 

Ibrahim al-Sumaida’i was taken to an unknown location and placed in solitary confinement after a raid on his house in Baghdad on Friday, he said in a statement on Tuesday. His phone was searched and he was unable to leave the room to use the bathroom, he said.

Iraqi security forces arrested Sumaida’i late on Friday, acting on an arrest warrant on the charge of “publicly insulting public authorities” issued by the Al-Karkh Investigation Court in Baghdad, after a representative from the Supreme Judicial Council filed a lawsuit against him.

The warrant was issued following “his attack on official institutions, describing them with bad words that go beyond the limits of the freedom of expression,” according to a statement from the Supreme Judicial Council on Saturday, who said he had made “indecent comments” in a WhatsApp group chat with group MPs and journalists.

“The court asked me to apologize for what I said, and I repeat my apology in this statement,” said Sumaida’i, adding that he is “astonished” that authorities have lodged lawsuits against people “for having opinions.”

He was released on bail on Monday.

His arrest was criticized by the Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights, which expressed “grave concern” that the arrest warrant was issued without regard for humanitarian and legal legislation. It is a “flagrant violation of human rights,” the commission said on Saturday, calling for Sumaida’i’s immediate release.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/230320213

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/200320212

https://www.saudi24news.com/2021/03/a-video-showing-the-moment-of-the-arrest-of-political-analyst-ibrahim-al-sumaidaie-from-his-home-in-baghdad.html

Iraq: Father of abducted Iraqi lawyer and activist assassinated in Amara

11/03/21

Jasb Hattab Aboud, father of the kidnapped protester Ali Jasb, cries as he holds his son's picture in his home in the town of Amara,Iraq. Aboud was shot to death Wednesday, March 10, 2021. (Photo: AP)

Unknown gunmen assassinated the father of missing Iraqi activist Ali Jaseb in Maysan province in the southern city of Amara on Wednesday.

Jaseb Aboud was attacked in the Maardh area of Amara after months of campaigning for information on the fate of his son who was kidnapped in 2019 amid an outbreak of protests in Iraq. Unidentified men on a motorcycle attacked Aboud with automatic weapons, killing him on the spot, local Iraqi media outlets quoted security sources as saying.

His son Ali Jaseb Hattab, an Iraqi lawyer and activist who took part in the demonstrations, was kidnapped on Oct. 8, 2019. Surveillance camera footage has shown that the lawyer was kidnapped on an Amara street by masked men after he was lured to the area by a woman. His family had received no information on his whereabouts.

The Maysan Police Directorate said late Wednesday that they had arrested Aboud’s killer and he was now in the custody of security forces, without giving further details.

Activist Ali Agwan said the central government was “responsible for the continuation of the assassinations, which have become the biggest threat to the activists and their families,” indicating to that “the party behind the assassinations is known to us and the government, and they are the armed militia, but the government have not arrested any of them.”

Prior to his assassination Aboud publicly accused a powerful Iran-backed militia, Ansar Allah al-Awfia, of kidnapping his son and even took the dangerous step of seeking to take its commander to court.

[…]

https://www.kurdistan24.net/en/story/24071-Father-of-abducted-Iraqi-lawyer-and-activist-assassinated-in-Amara

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/10032021

https://t4p.co/article/2021-03-10-Ali-Jaseb?lang=en

https://english.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2021/3/11/outspoken-father-of-missing-lawyer-shot-dead-in-iraq

https://www.amnesty.org.uk/resources/iraq-human-rights-lawyer-forcibly-disappeared

https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/mde14/1581/2019/fr/ (FRANCAIS)

Iraqi lawyer and activist killed after home invasion in Nasiriyah

09/01/21

Lawyers association calls for investigation into ‘hideous’ murder of Ali al-Hamami

A senior lawyer and activist was killed in the southern Iraqi city of Nasiriyah on Friday after unknown assailants broke into his home, according to officials and local media.

A member of the semi-official Iraq High Commission for Human Rights tweeted that Ali al-Hamami had died of “suffocation” on Friday after a group of men entered his house in the Shatra region of the city.

According to the Dhi Qar Bar Association, Hamami’s mouth had been gagged with tape and his house had been robbed.

In a statement on Friday, the organisation condemned his killing as “hideous and criminal” and called for an investigation.

“A cowardly crime requires the security services to take all measures in order to expedite the disclosure of its circumstances and details,” read the statement, according to Nas News.

“In this regard, the [Bar Association] will follow up the matter immediately, in order to reach the causes of the assassination and prosecute the accused, and cooperate with the security and investigation authorities so that the criminals obtain their fair penalty.”

Lawyers have been a particular target of violence in Iraq in recent years.

The Iraqi Bar Association website lists the names of 194 lawyers who have been killed in Iraq since 2003, when the US-led coalition overthrew former ruler Saddam Hussein.

[…]

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/Iraqi-lawyer-and-activist-killed

https://www.eg24.news/2021/01/iraq-gunmen-assassinate-a-lawyer-in-dhi-qar-governorate-erm-news.html

France: Un avocat parisien, défenseur de djihadistes, mis en examen pour “financement du terrorisme”

le 18 janvier, 2019

Un avocat parisien, défenseur notamment de djihadistes français partis rejoindre le groupe État islamique (EI) en Irak et en Syrie, a été mis en examen jeudi à Paris notamment pour “financement du terrorisme” et remis en liberté sous contrôle judiciaire, a-t-on appris de source proche du dossier. Cet avocat, Bruno Vinay, qui vient de passer 48 heures en garde à vue à la Direction générale de la sécurité intérieure (DGSI) est soupçonné d’avoir versé de l’argent à un intermédiaire censé exfiltrer d’Irak Maximilien Thibaut, un djihadiste originaire de la région parisienne.

Présenté à un juge d’instruction, il a été mis en examen pour “financement d’une entreprise terroriste” et “transfert non autorisé d’une somme supérieure à 10 000 euros“, selon cette source. Il est soumis à un contrôle judiciaire qui lui interdit de rencontrer ce djihadiste, porté disparu, et son épouse Mélina Boughedir, ainsi que deux journalistes. En septembre, l’une d’elles, une journaliste spécialiste des affaires de djihadisme avait été placée en garde à vue à la DGSI dans ce dossier avant d’être remise en liberté sans être poursuivie.

En outre, le juge d’instruction va saisir, sur réquisition du parquet de Paris, le conseil de l’ordre des avocats en vue d’une éventuelle suspension de l’exercice de sa profession d’avocat. La décision, susceptible d’appel appartient à l’instance disciplinaire qui peut prononcer une suspension de 4 mois, plusieurs fois renouvelables.

Selon la source proche du dossier, le versement litigieux porte sur une somme de 20 000 euros collectés auprès de l’entourage du jihadiste et qui devait permettre de faciliter sa reddition auprès des autorités irakiennes, mais celle-ci n’est finalement pas intervenue.

https://www.laprovence.com/actu/en-direct/5328097/un-avocat-parisien-defenseur-de-djihadistes-mis-en-examen-pour-financement-du-terrorisme.html

https://fr.reuters.com/article/topNews/idFRKCN1PC1MO-OFRTP

http://www.lefigaro.fr/actualite-france/2019/01/18/01016-20190118ARTFIG00063-un-avocat-de-djihadistes-mis-en-examen-pour-financement-du-terrorisme.php

https://www.europe1.fr/societe/un-avocat-de-djihadistes-mis-en-examen-pour-financement-du-terrorisme-3840845

https://www.leprogres.fr/loire-42/2019/01/17/un-avocat-qui-a-defendu-une-saint-chamonaise-partie-en-syrie-place-en-garde-a-vue

https://www.ledauphine.com/france-monde/2019/01/18/un-avocat-de-djihadistes-mis-en-examen-pour-financement-du-terrorisme

https://www.infoencontinu.com/article/?article=L%27avocat%20soup%C3%A7onn%C3%A9%20de%20financement%20terroriste%20voulait%20sauver%20des%20%22bombes%22%20ses%20clients

https://www.francetvinfo.fr/monde/proche-orient/offensive-jihadiste-en-irak/l-avocat-soupconne-de-financement-terroriste-voulait-sauver-des-bombes-ses-clients_3151719.html

https://canadafreepress.com/article/jihadi-defence-lawyer-arrested-for-financing-terrorism (ENGLISH)

https://888.hu/article-lebukott-a-francia-dzsihadistak-vedougyvedje-terroristakat-finanszirozott (HUNGARIAN)

UK/Iraq: Lawyers who pursued claims against British troops in Iraq will not face new misconduct charges

October 20, 2018

High Court dismisses Solicitors Regulation Authority’s attempt to overturn tribunal that cleared lawyers of wrongdoing 

Anna Crowther, Martyn Day and Sapna Malik, from law firm Leigh Day

Members of a law firm that pursued “baseless” allegations British troops tortured and murdered Iraqi detainees will not face new professional misconduct charges, after a legal challenge failed.

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) had tried to prosecute Leigh Day co-founder Martyn Day and colleagues Sapna Malik and Anna Crowther, over their handling of claims against the Ministry of Defence.

But in June last year, a tribunal found none of the allegations were proven and cleared the lawyers of wrongdoing. The SRA challenged the findings.

Lawyers for the regulator claimed the earlier decision was “significantly flawed”, but the High Court dismissed its appeal on all grounds.

“There is, overall, no proper basis on which the appellate court, on established principles, can legitimately interfere with the assessment of the evidence and the evaluative judgment of the tribunal on any of the allegations which are the subject of this appeal,” Lord Justice Davis, Justice Foskett and Justice Holgate concluded.

“The outcome is that this court unanimously concludes that all the grounds of appeal fail.”

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/iraq-war-british-troops-torture-murder-battle-danny-boy-leigh-day-case-sra-appeal-court-a8591896.html

https://www.lawgazette.co.uk/news/leigh-day-in-the-clear-as-high-court-throws-out-sra-appeal/5068006.article

https://www.theguardian.com/law/2018/oct/19/regulator-loses-appeal-against-law-firm-leigh-day-over-iraq-war-claims

https://www.leighday.co.uk/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martyn_Day_(lawyer)

Iraq/HRW: Officials Threatening, Arresting Lawyers

September 12, 2018

Mosul’s Civil Status Directorate. © 2018 Belkis Wille/Human Rights Watch

Iraqi security officers are threatening, and in some cases arresting, lawyers seen to be providing legal assistance to Islamic State (ISIS) suspects and families perceived to be related to ISIS members, effectively denying them legal services, Human Rights Watch said today.

Lawyers said that, fearing for their lives, they have stopped representing ISIS suspects or people perceived to be related to them. As a result, ISIS suspects are relying on state-appointed defense lawyers, who rarely provide an adequate defense, and families with perceived ties to ISIS suspects are generally left without access to legal services.

“The Iraqi government is attacking lawyers for doing their job and is effectively preventing people who need legal services from getting them,”  said Lama Fakih, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “In addition to being illegal, these attacks have a corrosive effect on the rule of law by sending a message that only some Iraqis have the right to legal representation.”

In July and August 2018, Human Rights Watch interviewed 17 lawyers working in and around Mosul for international and local organizations that provide legal services to those affected by Iraq’s recent armed conflict. The services include defending people against terrorism charges and assisting families who lived under ISIS control to get the civil documentation they need to live in government-controlled areas, an well as for welfare benefits (known as Public Distribution System or PDS cards) that they lost during their time under ISIS.

The lawyers all said they had witnessed or experienced threats and other verbal harassment by National Security Service or Ministry of Interior Intelligence and Counter Terrorism officers for providing legal representation to those viewed by security forces as “ISIS” or “ISIS families.” One said an Interior Ministry intelligence officer detained him for his legal activities for two hours, while another said that intelligence officers detained two other legal aid workers for two months, finally releasing them without charge.

https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/09/12/iraq-officials-threatening-arresting-lawyers

http://www.kurdistan24.net/en/news/69c3896d-2a97-452d-bf45-a5dc18d7c007

http://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeast/iraq/130920182