ICNL’s resources and information on Iraq.


ICNL works with local partner Humanitarian Help Hands (3H) to improve the legal environment for CSOs in Kurdistan. In 2018, 3H-led discussions with government entities resulted in concrete commitments by the government to amend Iraq’s CSO law and improve implementation practices, including by developing an e-registration system to make CSO registration quicker, easier, and less expensive.

Flag of Iraq (Graphic Credit: Wikimedia)

Civic Freedom Monitor


Last updated: 26 April 2021

Under the Ba’athist regime of Saddam Hussein, there was essentially no independent civil society within I [...]

Civil Society Organization Sustainability Index

The index, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development for twenty years, documents the development of civil society in seventy-one countries around the world, including Iraq. ICNL and FHI 360 work with local partners to produce the index annually.


Climate change and civic space (credit:

Climate Change and Civic Space in MENA

This study maps laws and regulations that impact civic spaces, participation, and assembly specifically as it relates to climate change ... Read More
Pandemics and Human Rights

Pandemics and Human Rights

In an article for Just Security, ICNL President Douglas Rutzen and Legal Advisor Nikhil Dutta discuss government overreach during pandemics ... Read More


Middle Eastern and North African Government Responses to COVID-19

map of MENA with red dots (credit:
This page provides information on Middle Eastern and North African government responses to the coronavirus, using information from the COVID-19 ... Read More

Building Cooperation after Conflict in Iraqi Kurdistan

After the 2014 war with ISIS, Iraqi Kurdistan’s government increased restrictions on civic space, hampering civil society’s ability to do meaningful work. A turning point came in 2017, when Kurdish CSOs were able to successfully engage with the government to rebuild trust. (photo credit: funky-data)
After the war with ISIS in 2014, Kurdistan’s regional government began to increase restrictions on civil society organizations (CSOs) – ... Read More

Kurdistan Parliament approves new NGO law

Kurdistan Parliament approves new NGO law
The Law on Non-Governmental Organizations in the Kurdistan Region was approved by the Parliament of Kurdistan on April 6, 2011 ... Read More

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