The description is submitted to:


Session C5030 (Usurpation: The Untold Stories of the Iraq War 2003-Present), 2017
While the media and policy-makers have paid some, albeit limited, attention to the horrific forms of gender-based and sexual violence at the hands of Daesh (also known as ISIS), particularly in relation to Ezidi young women and girls, my contribution will discuss how gender-based violence has been integral to the various political contestations and developments in post-invasion Iraq. More specifically, I will illustrate that the institutionalization of sectarianism has not only been gendered, but has contributed to state fragmentation, a shift towards competing conservative gender regimes and an increase in different forms of gender-based violence. At the same time, ethnic and political tensions between the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) in the Kurdish region of Iraq (KRI) have also influenced policies and legislation around the Personal Status Code (PDC) and gender based violence in KRI. However, my contribution will also highlight the mobilization of Iraqi women since 2003 to address a range of issues linked to gender-based inequalities and forms of injustice, but also to tackle sectarianism and increased political authoritarianism.