Supporting the Iraqi social movements

Thursday 26 October 2006

The future of Iraq belongs neither to the American-led occupation, nor to the Islamists and sectarians who are trying to carve out their own power-base, whatever the cost. Alternatives is supporting a wide range of social movements: women’s groups, trade unions, student and youth associations, that are committed to a secular, democratic and progressive alternative for Iraq.

Despite the growing poverty, violence and corruption in Iraq, our partners are making impressive progress in building grass-roots associations that represent tens of thousands of Iraqis, determined to play a greater role in the future of their country. They are defending women’s rights, opposing the privatisation of the oil industry, and promoting secular and democratic values.

Alternatives was active in the movement against the American-led invasion of Iraq, and tried to mobilise solidarity with the democratic Iraqi organisations based in the northern Kurdish region. Immediately after the invasion, we supported our Iraqi partners in establishing national organisations and networks, and building a democratic space for grass-roots civic activism. Since 2005, we have been providing strategic planning and other support services to many of the country’s largest social movements and secular civic associations.

Alternatives’ programme in Iraq is supported by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).

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