IRAQ – Iraq Cracks Down on Customary Tribal Justice

International Christian Concern | Nov. 23, 2018

The centuries old Iraqi tribal practice of resolving disputes through the “degga ashairiya” has now been classified by the government as an act of terrorism punishable by death, according to France24 News. When two Iraqi tribes engage in a dispute, tribal customs dictates that they meet and resolve the issue through de facto hearings. If one tribe fails to show, the rival tribe can fire on the absentee tribe’s homes, a practice known as the degga.

Tribal practices have been on the rise because the state is viewed as unreliable. The state has often showed a reluctance or inability to interfere in violent tribal disputes. These disputes are evident all across Iraq, particularly in the south, further deteriorating the security situation.