It has, Maj-Gen Abdul Jalil Khalaf said, included threats, intimidation and even murder.
Some victims were dressed in indecent clothes by their killers or had notices attached to them, he said.
Women interviewed by the BBC said they no longer dared venture on to Basra's streets without strict Islamic attire.
"There is a terrible repression against women in Basra," Maj-Gen Khalaf told the BBC.
"They kill women, leave a piece of paper on her or dress her in indecent clothes so as to justify their horrible crimes."
Forty-two women were killed between July and September this year, although the number dropped slightly in October, he said.
In one case, he added, a woman was killed in her home along with her six-year-old son, who was rumoured to have been conceived in an adulterous relationship.
Maj-Gen Khalaf, sent to Basra this year by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki to impose order in the city, said the police were often too scared to conduct proper investigations into the killings.
"The relatives are reluctant to report the crimes for fear of a scandal or because they despair of the police's ability to solve them," he added.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Fundamentlists Target Basrawi Women
How sad for Iraqis who celebrated their new-found freedom from tyranny, only to be murdered by fundamentalists. I wonder if these criminals are the same people who murdered Steven Vincent.