Over three months in 2020, Oxfam in Iraq collected data in Diyala and Anbar Governorates in Iraq to improve its understanding of the overall situation regarding sexual and gender-based violence and local communities' perceptions of the issue. The researchers' goal was to provide baseline information against which to monitor and measure the progress and effectiveness of the project “Naseej: Connecting Voices and Action to End Violence Against Women and Girls in the MENA Region." The project aims to address sexual and gender-based violence in fragile and conflict settings.
This study found that sexual and gender-based violence is widespread in Diyala and Anbar Governorates, and that communities perceive it to be mostly perpetrated by men. However, it also found that different vulnerabilities can overlap and that not all women and girls are perceived to be at the same risk. Most study participants believed that ending sexual and gender-based violence is the shared responsibility of the government, women's rights organizations, men, women and girls, and extended families.
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