A 38-year-old woman in Kirkuk and mother of four daughters put an end to her life by setting herself on fire, in protest of her husband’s plans to get married following his engagement, a source in local police said.
The accident occurred on Wednesday, February 23, in the center of Daquq district, south of Kirkuk. Once she set herself on fire, she was transferred to the hospital yet she passed away few hours later, a source in Daquq police anonymously told KirkukNow.
Last year, 98 cases of "suicide" have been registered in Kirkuk northern province, 78 of the victims were women aged 20 and up, a sharp surge of 50% compared to the last year 2020, according to statistics of the Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights IHCHR.
Over several years, many Iraqi families have suffered with mental health scars caused by past conflicts and economic hostilities, World Health Organization WHO said in a story about suicide in Iraq in December 2020.
Various factors could contribute to rates of suicide in Iraq, WHO found out, including intimate partner problems, physical health conditions, financial challenges, and legal issues. Others are personal or family experiences of violence, for instance, child abuse, neglect, or family history of suicide and broader community conditions, such as high crime rates and violence.
The source stressed that "the investigations showed that the woman poured kerosene on herself and set herself on fire.... the accident was due to a domestic problem."
Doctors at Daquq Hospital told the relatives that her burn rate had reached 80 percent.
A source close to that woman's family confirmed to KirkukNow that the accident occurred after "her husband has got a fiancé, as a second wife, a few days ago," which angered his wife, so she resorted to burning herself.
The victim's family has filed a lawsuit against her husband at Daquq Police Station.
According to the latest statistics of the Iraqi Ministry of Interior, more than 772 "suicide" cases were recorded all over Iraq in 2021, and this number is greater compared to 663 cases in 2020.
The figures show 60% of those who "committed suicide" were males, 40% of them were married, and more than 36% of the victims were under 20 years old, compared to 32% between 20-30 years.
According to the Ministry of Interior, the motives for suicide for 35% were related to psychological stress, 35% due to psychological disorders, 13% to poverty, about 10% due to unemployment, and some of them "committed suicide" due to failure in high schools and universities.
Some of these cases are teenager girls below 14, committed suicide because of forcible premature marriage.