Seven civil society activists were kidnapped in Baghdad earlier this week. The strong reaction by national politicians, the media and social media was not expressing any surprise at these abductions, rather they voiced their anger that these incidents have become worse than before. According to them, the frequency of these kidnappings signified increasing incapability of the state to do anything to confront this phenomenon.
The seven activists were kidnapped without any trace from their homes in the heart of Baghdad. Before this incident, dozens or rather hundreds were abducted. Some were kidnapped for years before they were released or before we know anything about their fate or about who abducted them.
Organized gangs usually kidnap businessmen and prominent employees to demand ransoms or settle accounts. However, no one asks for a ransom in exchange for releasing kidnapped civilians who are usually activists who became prominent during the popular activism which has been ongoing for two years now.
Jalal Al Shahmani and Waai al-Jabouri have been kidnapped from Baghdad and Babel for more than a year and a half now and no one has learnt anything about their fate yet.
Some Islamist parties’ leaders are shameless in attacking civil society activists and secularists while delivering public speeches, and one of them even went as far as blaming them for what’s happening in the country! As part of this propaganda, they began to target universities to market Islamist parties and criticize secular and civil society groups. Many civil society students were thus detained or expelled from some universities.Adnan Hussein