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Policy - Misinformation

Did Netherlands, Germany Derecognize Iraqi Government against Backdrop of Protests?

  Sunday 17th November 2019

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Facebook pages claimed that the Dutch and German parliaments decided to withdraw diplomatic recognition from the Iraqi government after “proving that it has been brutally suppressing protesters.”

These pages attributed the story to Russia Today, claiming that “The Hague court” took down the Iraqi flag against the backdrop of suppressing protesters by the government, without specifying whether “the court” is the International Criminal Court (ICC) or the International Court of Justice (ICJ), both are based in Den Haag.

Ihsan al-Shummari, head of the Center for Academic Political Thinking, said that the ICC has approved a complaint against Iraqi officials over suppressing the protests, without providing any source of the news.

Verify-Sy platform inspected these claims, by checking Russia Today and official German websites, and found that they are faked. In addition, the platform found no statements by the ICC or ICJ regarding the recent Iraqi protests.

Salam Mosafir, senior Russia Today reporter, denied the news story attributed to the channel, describing it as faked and urging his followers to be cautious with circulating such news.

Verify-Sy spotted a petition on Avaaz, a website that promotes global activism, demanding the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and the United Nations to refer the Iraqi government to the ICJ.

The U.N. delegation in Iraq proposed a roadmap to address the protests crisis, warning of the accumulation of frustrations about the lack of progress in Iraq in recent years.

Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi informed the E.U. ambassadors few days ago that he had issued strict orders not to use excessive force against protesters. A delegation of the E.U. called on the Iraqi government to end intimidation and violence, hold perpetrators accountable, and launch national talks.

Of note, the Iraqi High Commission For Human Rights (IHCHR) reported on November 10 that 319 Iraqi citizens were killed, and over 15,000 injured, since the beginning of the protests last October.