The bodies of two women have been found while another woman died after setting herself ablaze in separate incidents in Kirkuk province.
In the most recent incident a 65-year-old woman was found dead in Kirkuk’s al-Oruba neighborhood on Monday, November 25.
A security source from al-Oruba police station who spoke to KirkukNow on condition of anonymity, said, “We were informed by a young man that he had found the body of his mother in her home”, adding that according to her relatives, the victim who lived alone in an uncompleted house, was robbed before being murdered.
“Investigations into the incident are underway, while the body of the victim has been sent for forensic autopsy to know whether she was strangled or died by natural causes,” the source added.
The incident took place as women rights activists are holding a 16-day activism to mark the international day for the elimination of violence against women.
Another security source revealed to KirkukNow that a few days ago, a 19-year-old displaced woman from Salahaddin province set herself on fire inside her home in Kirkuk. She later died of her wounds in hospital, according to the source.
The province of Kirkuk lacks a shelter for women who face serious threats from their relatives, including death threats.
Elsewhere in Daquuq, south of Kirkuk, a 13-year-old girl was found dead from gunshot wounds last week, according to a police source.
Women rights organizations say they don’t have official statistics of murder cases of women, however they believe the number is immense.
Sirood Ahmed, a women’s rights advocate and head of the Kirkuk office of the Iraqi Amal Association, speaking to KirkukNow, said, “No accurate data is available, as most crimes committed against women are hidden by the victims’ relatives or by the security departments.”
Experts believe that poverty, traditions and norms of the society and forced marriage are major factors behind the rising violence against women in Kirkuk.