Statement on Fire Attack in the Youth Center Kifri

Statement on Fire Attack in the Youth Center Kifri

We will continue our work. THANK YOU for your support!

In the night from the 27th to the 28th of January 2022 the office and Youth and Culture Center in Kifri, run by the German based organization HAUKARI, was set on fire by unknown intruders. Fortunately, none of our staff members or the young people using the center were harmed. The meeting hall, the library and some of administrative rooms were burnt down and severely damaged. The HAUKARI Youth and Culture Center in Kifri is a public space. The building has been provided by the Kifri Municipality and is being used by numerous groups of young people and artists from Kifri for cultural events and exhibitions, music and arts courses, educational and social workshops, and leisure activities. The center is part of a larger project aiming at strengthening youth participation in the public debate and fostering dialogue among young people throughout Iraq. The project is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development and covers activities in the entire Germian region including Diyala province. Until now, there is no hint at the motives or affiliations of the intruders. The police and the Asaish of Kifri are investigating the case. We extend our thanks to the investigators as well as to the Kifri Fire Department for their immediate and helpful response. We deeply thank the mayor of Kifri, Mr. Shamal Namiq Karam, the municipality of Kifri and the Regional Administration of Germian for their continuous support and the German General Consul in Erbil and his team for their caring support. We also thank the artists and young people who have gathered today in Kifri in front of the Youth Center to show their support for our work! We are overwhelmed by messages of solidarity and support we receive from throughout the Kurdistan Region of Iraq by telephone calls, e-mails and social media posts and the supportive attention of media channels. Thank you! HAUKARI has been working in Kurdistan Iraq and specifically the Germian Region for 25 years with Anfal survivors, women affected by gender-based violence, with displaced people, young people, and artists. We will now immediately start repairing and renovating the office and the Youth Center and continue our work. We are in midst of the preparations for the 3rd Arts and Peace Festival in Kifri, which will take place from the 21st to the 23rd of February 2022. We invite all friends, colleagues, supporters to join us and the young people and artists from Kifri at that occasion! For some impressions from the Arts and Peace Festival 2018 click here.

For HAUKARI Germany and Kurdistan-Iraq: Mam Polla and Karin Mlodoch.

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