Tuesday, 14 April 2020 11:55

Evaluating Perceptions of Security and Police in Iraq: IOM Study

Erbil — Since 2003, Iraq has experienced cyclical episodes of intra-state violence and continuous, collective calls for improved governance and adherence to the rule of law.

Public distrust of state security actors is a major policy challenge and barrier to sustainable peace-building, because widespread distrust of the police and other state security actors discourages citizens from reporting crimes and other problems to state authorities while paving the way for multiple non-state security actors, with varying degrees of accountability, to occasionally fulfil the roles of legitimate and accountable security providers.

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Iraq partnered with Yale Law School’s Center for Global Legal Challenges (GLC) to study the effects of IOM’s Community Policing Programme, which aims to improve safety and security by building trust and cooperation between Iraqi civilians and law enforcement institutions.

“The Community Policing Programme is an important part of IOM Iraq’s migration management portfolio, as it helps build more resilient and secure communities,” said Placido Silipigni, Head of IOM Iraq’s Migration Management Unit. “This study offers insight into the programme’s effects in diverse contexts; it helps to further support the development of an evidence base that will guide the design and implementation of future activities, at the local and central level, in order to maximize the impact of the interventions.”

Evaluating Perceptions of Security and Police in Iraq analyses key similarities and differences in three communities — Baradiyah (Basra Governorate), Hamdaniyah (Ninewa Governorate), and Jubeil (Anbar Governorate) — across five areas: perceptions of security; perceptions of actors present in the communities and their impact on security; strategies for dispute resolution; perceptions of police; and gender differences in civilian-police relations.

“Understanding the perceptions, attitudes and concerns that community members expressed in each community can help to identify more efficient, feasible and sustainable approaches to rebuilding trust between the police and their communities, thus restoring accountable institutions, at the local and central level,” said Olga Aymerich, Research Officer at IOM Iraq. “This is a vital entry point to improving security outcomes and reveals the need for initiatives that strengthen this relationship.

This baseline report is based on data from a door-to-door first way of survey conducted in July-August 2019, before the implementation of the Community Policing Programme. The endline survey was conducted in December 2019 after the Community Policing Programme implementation and will be analysed in a subsequent report.

The preliminary findings of the baseline study are also available in infographic form:
• Baradiyah, Basra Governorate
• Hamdaniya, Ninewa Governorate
• Jubeil, Anbar Governorate

For more information please contact IOM Iraq’s Public Information Unit, Tel: +964 751 402 2811, Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Additional Info

  • Agency: IOM

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