Judge dismisses defamation lawsuits against Peregraf’s Editor-in-Chief brought by former deputy speaker of Iraqi Parliament

06-11-2022 07:32


Peregraf Editor-in-Chief Surkew Mohammed on Sunday (November 6) won two lawsuits filed against him by Aram Sheikh Mohammed, former deputy speaker of Iraq’s Council of Representatives.

Sheikh Mohammed alleged that the journalist had defamed him by publishing investigative reports in 2019 that found that the politician had failed to return a number of official cars to the Iraqi state after leaving office.

Peregraf’s Editor-in-Chief strongly denied the charges, which were made under the Kurdistan Region’s Press Law. He was defended by lawyers working for the Democracy and Human Rights Development Center (DHRD) who are supported by aEuropean Union project defending freedom of expression.

The Sulaimaniyah public prosecutor submitted documents in court supporting Mohammed, saying that his office had found that there was no evidence that he had committed defamation.

The presiding judge ruled in favor of the journalist and dismissed the charges, saying that "the court has decided to release you because there is no evidence against you."

Sheikh Mohammed initially filed his lawsuits in January 2020. The first hearing in the case took place on June 14, 2022. The day before, the politician decided to withdraw the complaint, but still, the court proceeded with the hearing.