ERBIL — At least seven protesters went missing a few days after massive protests broke out in Baghdad and other Iraqi cities, said Human Rights Watch (HRW).
“Four were still missing as of December 2. The families said they visited police stations and government offices seeking information without success, and the government took no tangible measures to locate their relatives. It is unclear whether government security or armed groups carried out the abductions,” the organization said in a detailed report.
“In another two cases, security forces arrested and arbitrarily held protest supporters,” it added.
Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch, said that whoever was behind the abduction, the government bears the responsibility for keeping people safe from such targeting.
“Authorities are failing Iraqi citizens by allowing armed forces to abduct people, and it will be up to the government to take swift action against these abuses,” she pointed out.