Muslim Peacemaker Teams
MPT-Iraq Muslim Peacemaker Teams

History and Background

The first Gulf war, the years of sanctions, and now a second war have left Iraq in shambles. Where once it was a country with a highly educated populace and reasonable security for most, Iraq's civil society has been shattered by a ruined economy. Unemployment is 50% to 60% in many parts of Iraq, and people have turned to violence in desperation to exist. No one is secure from thieves or kidnappers. Compounding this situation is a destroyed infrastructure, wrecked housing, clinics, hospitals, and schools, and the lack of funds for the simplest of things like trash collection. People are overwhelmed and do not know where to begin in order to make improvements to their lives. The Muslim Peacemaker Teams (MPT) is a source of support and encouragement to the Iraqi people, and our leadership is necessary to get things back on the right path, while teaching peace through word and example. MPT is focusing on the immediate needs of the people, which were determined by a consensus of its members.

The idea for a Muslim Peacemaker Teams developed in January of 2005 in the spirit of the Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) that work in Iraq and several other countries. CPT is a non-profit organization based in Chicago and Toronto that is committed to supporting communities struggling with violence and was founded in 1984 by the Brethren, Quaker, and Mennonite Churches and is also partnered with other peace churches. While working with the Iraqi Human Rights Watch in Karbala, Sami Rasouli met CPT members and liked what they had to offer. They had deeply passionate and selfless solidarity, including fellowship and respectful capacity building. Sami also liked that CPT was not proselytizing or patronizing and did not offer money or propaganda. Sami requested that CPT train Muslim men and women to be peacemakers so they could work with CPT members. After a week of intensive training in the skills of documentation and observation, nonviolent intervention and patience, 15 Muslims became peacemakers. Acting out everyday events such as the 2 and 3 day wait in the gasoline lines gave them opportunities to use nonviolent means to resolve differences. Working through their own hurts and biases in order to be open to others' feelings and experiences were also included in the training. They took the name Muslim Peacemakers Team and chose Sami Rasouli as their director and Mr. Hussein Al Ibraheemy as co-director. Letters For Peace Events Water for Peace MPT-Iraq: The Iraqi Art Project Water Filtration Project
Letters for Peace Events Water for Peace The Iraq Art Project Water Filtration Project



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