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Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Oct 17, 2019 4:44 am

German-Algerian woman
kept Yazidi slaves


German-Algerian woman, 21, who 'kept three Yazidi women as slaves after joining Islamic State in Syria' goes on trial in Dusseldorf

    Woman identified as Sarah O is on trial accused of Islamic State membership
    She is also alleged to have kept three captive Yazidi women as slaves in Syria
    Proceedings against 21-year-old opened Wednesday at Dusseldorf state court
    Prosecutors say she traveled to Syria in and married a fellow German ISIS recruit
Proceedings against the 21-year-old, identified only as Sarah O in line with German privacy rules, opened Wednesday at the Dusseldorf state court.

News agency dpa reported that judge Lars Bachler ruled that the proceedings should be closed to the public because the defendant was aged between 16 and 19 at the time of the alleged crimes.

Prosecutors say she travelled to Syria as a teenager in 2013, joined ISIS and married a fellow German ISIS recruit.

Proceedings against the 21-year-old, identified only as Sarah O in line with German privacy rules, opened Wednesday at the Dusseldorf state court.

Both allegedly conducted 'guard and police duties' in ISIS-controlled areas, and also forced a Yazidi girl and two Yazidi women to work in their household.

Investigators say Sarah O, described as a 'petite' young woman with hip-length hair and black-rimmed glasses, was 15 years old when she decided to join ISIS, the Spiegel reported.

Sarah O allegedly married high-ranking ISIS fighter Ismail S a few months after her arrival in Syria and went on to have three daughters, according to reports.

She went to Turkey in February 2018 and in September that year was deported to Germany where she has remained in custody, Spiegel reported.

The alleged ISIS member was said to have visited a religious school in Algeria before leaving for Syria - where, it is reported, she lived with her husband in children in apartments whose owners were expelled or killed by ISIS.

It is claimed she tried to recruit more people for the Islamic State over the internet.

Reports indicate that her husband Ismail S is still in Turkey and is known to German authorities. He is said to have operated arms transactions with Islamic State in Syria with the help of his parents, who were living in Germany.

Father Ahmet, 51, and mother Perihan S, 48, sat in the dock with Sarah O, accused of supporting a terrorist organisation, it has been reported.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/articl ... laves.html
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Oct 17, 2019 4:49 am

Hundreds of Yazidis Displaced

Hundreds of Yazidis have fled insecurity in southeastern Syria as the Turkish military and its allied militants continue their assault against Kurdish forces

Yazidi activists in the region told VOA that at least eight villages belonging to the religious minority had been deserted because of intense fighting that broke out last week shortly after U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw U.S. troops from the region.

Siban Sallo, a local Yazidi activist and journalist, said that more than 500 Yazidis had been displaced in eight out of 15 Yazidi villages extending across the northeastern Syria's border with Turkey.

The villagers have escaped south toward the areas that are still intact and remain under the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

"All 15 villages lost electricity after the station generating power in the area was hit by a mortar," Sallo told VOA.

Three Syriac-Christian villages in the vicinity also emptied out after the conflict broke out.

"Snipers were shooting at people in Tal Khatoun village. Four people from Tal Hasnak village were injured by fire," he said, adding that fear spread among the Yazidi residents that they could be targeted by Islamic hardliner elements among the Turkish-backed rebels.

Yazidi genocide

Yazidis are an ethno-religious minority of about 550,000 people, mostly residing in northern Iraq and with a substantial number in northern Syria.

Radical islamist groups consider the Yazidis infidels and "devil worshippers" who should denounce their religion or be killed.

The Islamic State (ISIS) terror group killed thousands of Yazidi men and enslaved their women in a genocidal campaign in Iraq in 2014.

One of the displaced villagers from Turkey's recent campaign, language instructor Lina Khodor, 22, said she and her family of eight fled Tal Khatoun village after the Turkish army and allied militants attacked their houses. She said shelling destroyed several houses in the village.

Tal Khatoun is a small Yazidi village 14 kilometers from al-Qahtaniyah in the eastern Qamishli countryside.

"When the attack started around 3 a.m., first we heard endless gunfire rattling in our village, and then mortars fell on our homes. One mortar hit the oil station in the area, which caused a power outage. Then we just took off before it was too late," Khodor said.

The family members packed some clothes along with their identification cards and official documents and escaped to the neighboring town of al-Qahtaniyah, where a larger population of Kurds, Arabs and Assyrians lives.

Khodor added that the Yazidi villagers feared that IS sympathizers in the area could be emboldened and their imprisoned leaders could break out amid chaos caused by the Turkish incursion. To protect themselves, they escaped to more populated areas to mix with the Muslim population.

"All women have left the village with their children, fearing that what happened to Yazidis in Sinjar in 2014 and Afrin in 2018 would happen to them. Only a few armed men are staying behind to protect their homes from looting," she told VOA.

Human rights organizations accuse Turkey-backed rebels of targeting the minority group in the predominately Kurdish town of Afrin in northwest Syria and forcing thousands of them to flee.

The ethnically and religiously diverse town in Aleppo's countryside was under protection of the U.S.-backed Kurdish forces before the Turkish incursion in March 2018.

Afrin example

Rights groups such as the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights say they are documenting daily human rights violations by Turkey-backed rebels against Afrin residents, especially minorities.

Azad Diwani, a U.K.-based scholar and researcher, told VOA that many militants Turkey is backing in its operation in northeast Syria have radical jihadi sentiments, prompting fears among minorities in the region.

"Turkey-backed rebels destroyed religious temples and forced people to convert to Islam. We even heard that a number of women from the Alwaite sect were taken as sex slaves. They violate the rights of anyone who does not abide to their ideology," Diwani said.

Diwani said many factions who were a part of Turkey's operation in Afrin reportedly were recruited to participate in the attack on northeastern Syria.

https://www.voanews.com/extremism-watch ... east-syria
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:49 am

Doctor Honored for Helping
Yazidis Calls for Justice


Yazidi families would not feel safe returning to their homes in Iraq until Islamic State militants accused of atrocities against the religious minority face justice, according to a doctor awarded Saturday for his work with Yazidi women and children

Mirza Dinnayi, a Yazidi activist named the winner of the Aurora humanitarian prize for helping 1,000 Yazidi women and children seek medical treatment in Europe, said prosecutions were key to help the “completely traumatized” community.

“Yazidis need to trust the authorities in Iraq in order to establish peace and make a process of reconciliation and transitional justice. This has not happened,” Dinnayi said.

UN declares genocide

Islamic State rampaged through the Yazidi religious community’s heartland in Sinjar, northern Iraq, in 2014, slaughtering thousands of people, in what the United Nations has called a genocide.

About 7,000 women and children were kidnapped to become sex slaves or fighters. Almost 3,000 of them remain unaccounted for, according to community leaders.

The jihadist group was driven out of the region in 2017, but many Yazidi still live in camps, afraid to return.

Some militants have faced trial in Iraq but on charges of belonging to a terrorist group rather than for alleged war crimes and genocide — something that has fueled a sense of distrust in authorities among the Yazidi community, Dinnayi said.

“The recognition of genocide is the first step in order to satisfy the victims,” he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in a phone interview from Armenia where the award ceremony was held.

The problem was exacerbated by Iraqi laws allowing rapists to avoid prosecution by marrying their victims and the lack of a specific crime for sexual slavery, Dinnayi said.

Fears of ISIS escape

The 46-year-old added he was also concerned that a recent Turkish offensive against Kurdish forces in neighboring Syria could further hamper efforts to see justice done, by providing militants jailed there with a “big opportunity” to escape.

Kurdish officials have said almost 800 Islamic State-affiliated foreigners, many of them women and children, escaped from a camp after the Turkish incursion began last week.

There are also fears that jihadists held in jails in Kurdish-controlled areas of northern Syria could flee.

Prize money goes to aid groups

Dinnayi, who lives in Germany, was awarded the $1 million prize for his work helping more than 1,000 Yazidi women and children seek medical treatment in Europe.

The prize money would go to his organization, Air Bridge Iraq, and two other aid groups helping people who suffered at the hands of Islamic State militants, he said.

The Aurora prize runner-ups were Zannah Mustapha, a lawyer who set up a school for children affected by violence in northeastern Nigeria, and Yemeni lawyer Huda Al-Sarari, who investigated human rights abuses in the war-torn country.

The annual Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity was founded by Armenia-based 100 LIVES, a global initiative that commemorates a 1915 massacre in which up to 1.5 million Christian Armenians were killed by Ottoman Muslims.

https://www.voanews.com/europe/doctor-h ... ls-justice
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Oct 23, 2019 7:00 pm

We must not grow numb
to the Yazidi genocide


A few week ago, I had an opportunity to meet with six members of the Yazidi community, including journalists and activists. I must admit that although I knew and was very shaken when I first learned about the horrifying attack by ISIS on the Yazidi community in Sinjar, Iraq, listening to their account of what actually happened still stunned me beyond description.

What was just as shocking and deeply disturbing is the fact that the international community has remained largely numb to the genocide that was perpetrated by ISIS starting in August 2014 against this uniquely peaceful and caring community. More than five years later, the Yazidis still suffer from the horror of those tragic events, which will continue to haunt them as long as there are no specific plans by the Iraqi government and the international community to bring their plight to a humanely satisfactory conclusion.

To put the story of the Yazidis in context, a brief background is in order. The name Yazidi comes from the Middle Persian Yazad, which simply means “divine being.” They share many aspects of Christianity and Islam. Their supreme being is known as Xwedê, who is beyond worldly affairs and is not prayed to directly. They have their own language and culture, and their centuries-old religion is among the oldest monotheistic pre-Abrahamic faiths.

Despite centuries of persecution, the Yazidis have never forsaken their faith, which only attests to their remarkable sense of identity and strength of character. They are not well known globally; their resources are limited, and their political influence is negligible.

During the assault on Sinjar in 2014 by ISIS, the Yazidis were targeted with mass killing and forcible transfer. It is estimated that between 5,000-10,000 men and boys were executed in the immediate aftermath of the attack, which is tantamount to genocide. Nearly 7,000 women and children were abducted and sold as slaves, and subjected to torture and sexual violence, while hundreds of thousands fled.

More than 70 mass graves have been discovered in the region. Moreover, ISIS obliterated the agricultural resources of many rural communities, destroying wells, orchards, and infrastructure to prevent the Yazidis’ return to their homeland.

What is especially worrisome is that there remain ISIS sleeper cells who will be ready to strike again, especially now in the aftermath of the Turkish invasion of the Kurdish territory in Syria, which led to the release and/or escape of thousands of ISIS prisoners. ISIS’ objective in the area was and still is the extermination of the Yazidis, among other ethnic and religious groups.

The most affected group resulting from the unfathomable atrocities by ISIS are young Yazidi boys and girls who are suffering from untreated psychological trauma, which is further aggravated by the continuing hopelessness and despair. It is estimated that there are more than 300,000 Yazidis still living in emergency camps under terrible conditions that remain just as bad as they were during their first few weeks of exile.

Particularly painful is the fact that hundreds of freed Yazidi women now face the stigma of bearing children fathered by ISIS fighters as a result of rape while in captivity. These women face banishment from their home community and their children born from non-Yazidi fathers will grow up with no sense of belonging, as they have no place among them. They will become increasingly vulnerable and an easy prey to be recruited by extremist groups.

Back in Sinjar, however, sporadic violence continues, reconstruction work has slowed down considerably, and drinking water for schools and hospitals is scarce. One of the biggest problems is the presence of the Popular Mobilization Unit (PMU), an Iraqi government-sanctioned paramilitary force backed by Iran.

The force is predominantly Shiite; they are as dangerous as ISIS and the Yazidis in the area are terrified that if PMU ends up taking over the entire area, the condition of the Yazidis and ultimately their fate will be even worse.

Maria Fantappie, the senior advisor on Iraq at the International Crisis Group, said that “Despite having been freed from ISIS presence… the region de facto remains an occupied district where competing Iraqi and foreign agendas play out by coopting Yazidis into rival armed groups.”

Regardless of their outcry for help and continued suffering, the international community is NOT providing the necessary financial aid to rebuild the Yazidis’ homes and villages. They try desperately to make their case known to whomever they can talk to, especially passing journalists who can spread the word about their unbearable condition.

There are those who suggest that the Yazidis will be better off moving to other countries because Iraq is not safe and much of their land is occupied by various militias, which obviously is not the answer. Most Yazidis want to go back to their homeland where they lived and died for millennia.

The 2018 Nobel Peace Prize co-winner Nadia Murad, who was recognized for her efforts to end sexual violence, stated: “We suffered but didn’t give up. We were not helped and rescued when ISIS attacked, but I hope this recognition means that the international community will help us recover from this genocide and will prevent such attacks against other communities like us in the future.”

There are a number of measures that must be taken immediately to prevent further displacement and deprivation which the Yazidis have endured so painfully. The media campaign that began at the fifth anniversary—#DoNotForgetUs—designed to draw international attention has thus far produced limited results. Nevertheless, this campaign must continue and be supported by the EU and the US.

Western powers along with the Iraqi government should initially provide a relatively small amount of $250 million, which can go a long way to begin the process of rehabilitation. The US should assume greater responsibility for the plight of the Yazidis, as the rise of ISIS is a horrific byproduct of the ill-fated Iraq war.

The US, with the support of European powers, should push the UN to establish better monitoring for early warning signs of impending atrocities, and preserve evidence of the Yazidis’ genocide, which will be critically important for prosecuting ISIS fighters for their unspeakable crimes. In addition, mass graves should be exhumed by a special UN contingency to identify some of the victims and push for the creation of an international tribunal to put on trial many high-ranking ISIS commanders and charge them with crimes against humanity.

As long as ISIS and other militias continue to operate in the area, the Iraqi government should fund the recruitment of locals to form a regional security force. This local force will have a vested interest in protecting their areas, and it should be bolstered by a fairly small US and EU military force to be based in Sinjar to protect the Yazidis and allow their exiles to return home. The Iraqi government must also bear a special responsibility to restore some normalcy by appropriating the necessary funding for rebuilding schools, hospitals, and infrastructure, and return services to Sinjar.

Having suffered atrocities of such magnitude with little help from the outside to come to their rescue, the Yazidis, for good reason, no longer trust anyone as they feel betrayed and abandoned to the mercy of ISIS. It is critical then to begin a process of reconciliation that would allow for the nurturing of trust, which gradually can be realized if the above measures are in fact implemented in good faith.

The international community cannot grow numb to genocide, as this will continue to haunt us only with greater force. The Yazidis have paid the ultimate price, and no other ethnic group should be subjected to the same fate by any perpetrator with impunity, and with apathy from the international community.
.........................................

Dr. Alon Ben-Meir is a professor of international relations at the Center for Global Affairs at New York University. He teaches courses on international negotiation and Middle Eastern studies. alon@alonben-meir.com

https://www.sdjewishworld.com/2019/10/2 ... -genocide/
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Oct 26, 2019 11:30 am

Movie about Yazidis, female fighters offers stylized look at Kurdish plight

"Sisters In Arms” from French director Caroline Fourest is a bitter reminder of the massacre of the Yazidi minority group by Islamic State militants after they took control of the town of Sinjar in 2014. Unlike other movies on the subject, it focuses on how Kurdish and foreign women of different backgrounds and beliefs fought back against the jihadists

"Sisters In Arms" was shown for the first time in the Middle East at the opening ceremony of the 4th Sulaimaniyah International Film Festival on Oct. 1. Many of its scenes — particularly those of female fighters fighting the extremists — brought cheers, whistles and applause from the audience.

The film starts with an idyllic spring scene in the Kurdish countryside between a Yazidi girl named Zara and her two brothers. It's not long before heavily armed ISIS militants raid the village of the Yazidis, whom ISIS describes as “devil worshippers” and demand convert to Islam or face death. Zara’s father, who refuses to convert, is killed.

Zara is raped and sold as a sex slave to a British ISIS fighter. She manages to escape to a liberated area, where she joins the foreign female fighters who eventually rescue Zara’s little brother and help defeat ISIS in a town that resembles Sinjar. In the final scene, Zara and "Mother Sun" — an older and more seasoned fighter — stand together victoriously, both aware of the hardships the Kurds still have to endure for self-determination.

Maya Sansa, an Italian actress of Iranian descent who played the role of one of the female fighters, told Al-Monitor, “I played ‘Mother Sun’ — a female fighter fighting alongside the Kurds against Daesh [the Arabic term for ISIS]. I think it is a very important role, and I am much honored that Caroline offered that role to me. We bring the message that Kurds are brave and your fight is so important to us, even foreigners want to join you.”

Despite a very committed production team, the shooting was not easy, said Sansa, who had to learn how to handle a Kalashnikov for her role. “The conditions were tough but we were committed and ready to overcome any challenge," she said.

Some Iraqi and foreign critics, however, are less enthusiastic, saying that the film distorts history. Iraqi actor and director Jalal Kamil, who attended the festival, told Al-Monitor that the film, though good on the whole, had its shortcomings, mainly with the narrative. “The film should have raised great sympathy in me, but unfortunately some [weak moments in the narrative and irrelevant scenes] made it difficult,” he said.

Following the screening in Sulaimaniyah, many Kurds criticized it as detached from reality and misleading about what actually happened in the war against ISIS in northern Iraq. Many critics said that the film minimized the way the Kurdish peshmerga forces — mainly forces loyal to the Kurdistan Democratic Party — left the Yazidis defenseless against ISIS.

"The movie does not tell the reality as it was,” Rawshan Qasim, a Kurdish journalist from Syria who is currently living in Sulaimaniyah, told Al-Monitor. “We were also hoping to see the role of the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units, the Women’s Protection Units [YPJ] in rescuing the Yazidi women and how that rescue restored hope for the Yazidi women.”

She said she realized that the film is not a documentary, however. “The film reflects the director’s viewpoint,” she told Al-Monitor.

Fourest told Al-Monitor that the Yazidi women went through hell but she wants to show them as more than victims.

“The women fighters terrified the jihadists — men of ISIS were scared of being killed by women," as they believed that they would not be considered martyrs and go to heaven if they were killed by women. "In a way, ISIS fighters have been punished by their misogyny; their misogyny became their curse," she said.

“This is so powerful that only cinema can give us a picture of what was going on. Because part of this war is finished, the world wants to forget it. My film aims to make sure that the world will not forget about what happened here, about what the Yazidi women have suffered and about the Kurdish resistance,” she told Al-Monitor.

Asked about the criticism, Fourest said that the film is “praise for the Kurdish people and especially women who won the war against ISIS.”

It is not a documentary, she said, adding that the movie begins with the Yazidis being abandoned by the peshmerga, but she did not want to deepen the internal Kurdish disputes.

“I wanted, as a filmmaker, to build a utopia where all Kurds are under a same flag, though this does not exist in reality. No [faction] names are given, because I wanted that the world know that Kurds as a whole won this war. The ISIS flag also is different. [Some observers] will notice that some uniforms and characters are similar to the YPJ, others to the peshmerga. The woman chief — the character known as the Lion of Kobani — is YPJ. The colonel is a peshmerga.”

She said that in general, the film followed reality very closely, with “the humanitarian corridor, when refugees were taken by the YPJ and helped," and another scene "that is a metaphor for Sinjar, where you see the brigade — with YPJ uniforms — struggling and winning against ISIS,” she said.

https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/origin ... views.html
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Mon Oct 28, 2019 11:04 pm

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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Oct 31, 2019 1:23 am

For victims of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi:

    The war is not over
From the Sinjar Mountains of northern Iraq to San Bernardino in California, from Raqqa to London, Istanbul and Colombo: it is a testament to the evil perpetrated by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi that his death has been celebrated across continents, ethnicity and faith.

But for the victims of ISIS across the Middle East and around the world, the trauma unleashed by years of terror did not disappear with the fall of the caliphate, and it will not disappear with Baghdadi’s death.

“My brother told me the news yesterday. I was so happy when I heard,” says Saad Salmo, a 21-year-old Yazidi and former Isis captive from Sinjar, the minority community’s historic homeland.

“But ISIS still has 22 of my relatives, including three of my brothers and one sister. Nothing will change until we get them back.”

Today, Salmo lives in a refugee camp in northern Iraq while her hometown still lies in ruins. She spent years in Isis captivity after being kidnapped along with thousands of other women and kept as slaves on Baghdadi’s orders. She was moved around Syria, from Tal Afar to Raqqa, and finally to Deir ez-Zor, where she was rescued last year.

ISIS fighters rampaged through the town of Sinjar in northern Iraq in the early hours of 3 August 2014. They massacred thousands of men where they stood, and took an even greater number of women and children into slavery.

Those who managed to escape the first wave of killings were chased up the winding roads of Mount Sinjar, which has been a place of refuge for the Yazidis throughout their history. Many died of thirst as they fled.

It is estimated that thousands of Yazidis are still missing. Thousands more are living in limbo in refugee camps, unable to return to their destroyed homes. Mass graves are still being discovered in Sinjar to this day

“For years we Yazidis have had so much suffering, so this news alleviates our pain,” says 25-year-old Naveen Rasho of Baghdadi’s death.

Rasho, a former radio announcer, was held captive for five years by ISIS. She lived every day in fear. And initially, when the caliphate fell, she was too afraid to reveal her identity.

She ended up in Al-Hol camp with thousands of willing ISIS wives, where she finally came forward to reveal her identity. But even today, having managed to flee the camp, she still lives in fear.

“As long as there are ISIS fighter alive our pain will not end,” she says. “We wish Baghdadi had been killed by Yazidis.”

Under Baghdadi’s reign, ISIS massacred and persecuted religious minorities. But the vast majority of its victims were Muslims in Iraq and Syria – people who were forced to live under the brutal caliphate.

In the ISIS capital of Raqqa, the group would murder those who stood against it. The city’s central square became a macabre execution site where bodies would hang for days.

Like Salmo, Hussam Hammoud, a 27-year-old Raqqa native, is also displaced from his home. The ramifications of the terror group’s onslaught and occupation continue to reverberate today.

“It’s a victory for the Syrian people in general. He was the boss of the organisation who killed the most people from Raqqa,” he tells The Independent by phone.

“But we cannot consider that his death is the end of ISIS. There are thousands of ISIS members and families without anyone to guard them, people like them will form the cells.

They are rebuilding already.”

Hammoud recently had to flee his home following a deal struck between Kurdish forces and the Syrian government. Many in the city now fear a return of government control in Raqqa.

“We had to make a lot of sacrifices because of Daesh (ISIS). We lost our houses, we lost our relatives. We lost everything for nothing,” he says.

Part of Baghdadi’s grand plan for domination relied on drawing in extremist recruits from across the world. Its propaganda efforts were central to that. But few could have predicted the bloodthirsty nature of the group’s desire to be heard.

Aid workers, journalists and civilians who came to Syria to help were caught in the ISIS web. They were paraded on camera before being killed.

For their families, too, the war never ended. Many of them have started foundations to campaign for people caught up in the same nightmare that they faced, or to fight for the causes they believed in.

“Whenever anything like this happens, it brings back all of the horror,” Diane Foley, the mother of American journalist James Foley, told The Atlantic in the aftermath of Baghdadi’s death.

Since the death of her son, she has launched the James W Foley Legacy Foundation, which advocates for the freedom of all American hostages abroad and the safety of journalists worldwide.

James Foley was a freelance journalist who went to Syria to document the suffering of its people. He was one of the first hostages publicly murdered by ISIS.

In a statement, his mother said she hoped Baghdadi’s death would “hinder the resurgence of terror groups and pray that captured Isis fighters will be brought to trial and held accountable.

“I remain concerned about the dozen Americans held hostage in Syria, including Austin Tice and Majd Kamalmaz,” she added.

Mike Haines OBE, brother of David Haines, the British humanitarian aid worker murdered by Isis in 2014, similarly launched the Global Acts of Unity campaign, which promotes unity, tolerance and understanding in schools through visits.

“The devastating loss of my brother at the hands of Daesh had a life-changing impact on my family. We continue to feel his loss every day,” he said in a statement following Baghdadi’s killing.

“It has not been an easy path to take, to defy Daesh’s aims and channel that pain into a powerful, positive force for good and create Global Acts of Unity. But, by working with different faiths and communities, it has been the right one.”

Many other families continue to fight against the ideology of ISIS in memory of their loved ones.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/worl ... 74861.html
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Oct 31, 2019 1:47 am

For Yazidis, Baghdadi's Death

    'Doesn't Feel Like Justice Yet'
Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's death will mean nothing to 19-year-old rape victim Jamila unless the Islamic State militants who enslaved her are brought to justice.

Jamila, who asked not to be identified by her last name, is one of thousands of women from the Yazidi minority religion who were kidnapped and raped by IS after it mounted an assault on the Yazidi homeland in northern Iraq in August 2014.

"Even if Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is dead, it doesn't mean Islamic State is dead," Jamila told Reuters outside the tent that is now her temporary home in the Sharya camp for displaced Yazidis in Iraq's Kurdistan Region.

This file image made from video posted on a militant website July 5, 2014, purports to show the leader of the Islamic State group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, delivering a sermon at a mosque in Iraq.

"This doesn't feel like justice yet," she said. "I want the men who took me, who raped me, to stand trial. And I want to have my voice heard in court. I want to face them in court. ... Without proper trials, his death has no meaning."

Baghdadi, who had led ISIS since 2010, detonated a suicide vest after being cornered in a raid by U.S. special forces in northwest Syria, U.S. President Donald Trump announced Sunday.

Inspired by his edicts to enslave and slaughter Yazidis, whom ISIS regard as infidels, his followers shot, beheaded and kidnapped thousands in a rampage which the United Nations called a genocidal campaign against them.

Along with thousands of other women and children, Jamila said she was enslaved by the militants and kept in captivity for five months in the city of Mosul along with her sister.

She was just 14 when she was seized. But her problems did not end after she and her sister managed to escape when, she said, their guards were high on drugs.

"When I first came back, I had a nervous breakdown and psychological problems for two years, so I couldn't go to school," she said.

No plans to go home

Now instead of working or catching up on her years of lost schooling, she looks after her mother, with whom she shares her cramped tent at the camp.

"My mother can't walk and has health problems, so I have to stay and take care of her because my older siblings are in Germany," she said.

The prospect of going home to Sinjar in northern Iraq is not an option for Jamila, and many others. The city still lies in ruin four years after the IS onslaught, and suspicion runs deep in the ethnically mixed area.

"Sinjar is completely destroyed. Even if we could go back, I wouldn't want to because we'd be surrounded by the same Arab neighbors who all joined ISIS in the first place, and helped them kill us (Yazidis)," she said.

ISIS trials

Thousands of men are being tried in Iraqi courts for their ties to IS. Iraq has so far not allowed victims to testify in court, something community leaders and human rights groups say would go a long way in the healing process.

"It is deplorable that not a single victim of Islamic State's horrific abuses including sexual slavery has gotten their day in court," said Belkis Wille, Iraq Researcher for Human Rights Watch. "Iraq's justice system is designed to allow the state to exact mass revenge against suspects, not provide real accountability for victims."

For some of the nearly 17,000 Yazidis at the Sharya camp, Baghdadi's death was a first step in that direction, though they fear the IS fighters who are still alive.

Mayan Sinu, 25, can dream of a new life after the camp as she and her three children have been granted asylum by Australia. But she also wants the men who shot her husband in the legs and dragged him off to be brought to justice. He has been missing since the incident five years ago.

"I hope Baghdadi is suffering more than we ever did, and my God we suffered," said Sinu. "I wish he (Baghdadi) hadn't blown himself up so I could have slaughtered him myself with my bare hands."

https://www.voanews.com/middle-east/yaz ... ustice-yet
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Nov 01, 2019 3:50 am

Nobel prize winner calls for
jihadists to be tried like Nazis


    Nobel Peace Prize winner says jihadists should be given Nuremberg-style trials

    Nadia Murad from Kocho, Iraq was held captive by ISIS for three months in 2014

    She called for ISIS detainees to be tried in an 'open court for the world to see'
Yazidi activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Nadia Murad has called for all captured ISIS jihadists to be given Nuremberg-style trials.

She took to Twitter to demand that detained Islamic State fanatics be brought to justice in an open court 'for the world to see' in the wake of the death of leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi.

Murad is herself a survivor of ISIS after she was held captive by the terrorist organisation for three months in Mosul.

Originally from the Yazidi village of Kocho in Iraq, she now lives in Germany.

In 2018, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize alongside Denis Mukwege for her 'efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict.'

Nadia Murad speaks during a meeting with Iraqi President Barham Salih and other dignitaries in Baghdad on December 12, 2018. called for all ISIS jihadists to be given Nuremberg-style trials

Similarly to thousands of other Yazidi women, Murad was brutally raped and between by ISIS’ terrorist soldiers before she managed to escape to Germany where she now lives. She became the first woman from Iraq to win the Nobel Peace Prize for her activism in speaking out against abuse and sexual violence

    The death of #alBaghdadi is welcoming news for the world, especially for those communities that were targeted by #ISIS. Baghdadi died as he lived – a coward using children as a shield. Let today be the beginning of the global fight to bring ISIS to justice.
    — Nadia Murad (@NadiaMuradBasee) October 28, 2019

Murad hailed the news of al-Baghdadi's death on her Twitter account, saying: 'The death of #alBaghdadi is welcoming news for the world, especially for those communities that were targeted by #ISIS.

'Baghdadi died as he lived – a coward using children as a shield. Let today be the beginning of the global fight to bring ISIS to justice.'

She went on to call for captured jihadists to be brought to justice 'in an open court for the world to see.'

Murad (pictured in April) hailed the news of al-Baghdadi's death on her Twitter account, saying: 'The death of #alBaghdadi is welcoming news for the world, especially for those communities that were targeted by #ISIS'

She said: 'Justice is the only acceptable course of action. We must unite and hold #ISIS terrorists accountable in the same way the world tried the Nazis in an open court at the Nuremberg Trials.'

She also drew attention to minority communities in Iraq such as the Yazidis and Christians who 'suffered at the hands of Al-Baghdadi and his militants' and 'need help.'

Plight of the Yazidi under ISIS

The Yazidis are a religious sect whose beliefs combine elements of several ancient Middle Eastern religions.

The group's beliefs were seen as heretical by the twisted butchers of the Islamic State.

ISIS overran the Yazidi faith's heartland of Sinjar in northern Iraq in 2014.

Men and older women were massacred, while younger women and girls were forced into sex slavery or 'married' to ISIS fighters.

Thousands of Yazidi women were raped and tortured by their captors.

The attacks by ISIS on the Yazidis were condemned as genocide by the United Nations.

As ISIS's grip on Iraq was lost, the jihadis decapitated dozens of Yazidi women and dumped the heads in dustbins, according to British SAS troops who entered recaptured territory.

'Yazidis are still displaced and thousands (mostly women and children) remain missing,' she said.

In August 2014, the Islamic State killed or enslaved thousands of Yazidis when IS swept through their homeland in northern Iraq.

Thousands of Yazidi men were massacred and more than 3,000 women and girls as young as nine were enslaved.

Murad concluded her series of tweets by saying: 'I am grateful to all- the US government and Coalition members - who participated in and supported the operation.'

Murad was captured by IS on on 15 August 2014 and held as a slave in the city of Mosul, where she was beaten, burned with cigarettes, and raped.

She successfully escaped after her captor left the house unlocked and was smuggled out of the Islamic State controlled area, to reach a refugee camp in Duhok.

She went on to join an activist group in Germany which took her to the UN, where she became a Human Rights Ambassador and then wrote a book.

Murad became the first woman from Iraq to win the Nobel Peace Prize for her activism in speaking out against abuse and sexual violence.

The UN recognizes the genocide that happened to the Yazidis, but British-Lebanese human rights lawyer Amal Clooney is helping with the steps required to secure a trial.

British-Lebanese Amal Clooney said in her 60 Minutes about ISIS genocide: 'This was the same dilemma that the world had after the atrocities of Nazi Germany'

Clooney compared the crimes against Yazidis to that of 'after the atrocities of Nazi Germany' as she sat down with Scott Pelley for a 60 Minutes report with Murad earlier this month.

'This was the same dilemma that the world had after the atrocities of Nazi Germany,' Clooney said during the CBS interview.

'Because today you do have people denying that there were gas chambers and what do you have to point to? You can go back and say there are 4,000 documents that were submitted in the Nuremberg trials and the Yazadis deserve nothing less than that.'

What were the Nuremberg Trials?

The Nuremberg trials were a series of military tribunals held by the Allied forces under international law and the laws of war following the Second World War.

They were notable for the prosecution of leading figures from the political, military, judicial and economic leadership of Nazi Germany. Many of these figures were responsible for war crimes including the Holocaust and systematic ethnic cleansing of non-Aryan races.

The trials were held in the city of Nuremberg, Germany, and are described as the 'greatest trial in history'.

Held between November 20, 1945 and October 1, 1946, the Tribunal was given the task of trying 24 of the most important figures within the Third Reich.

Hermann Goering: Reichsmarschall, Commander of the Luftwaffe 1935–45, Chief of the 4-Year Plan 1936–45, and original head of the Gestapo until 1934.

Originally the second-highest-ranked member of the Nazi Party and Hitler's designated successor, he fell out of favour with the Nazi leader in April 1945. He was the highest ranking Nazi official to be tried at Nuremberg.

Goering was sentenced to hanging, but committed suicide by ingesting cyanide while waiting to be executed.

Rudolf Hess: Hitler's Deputy Fuhrer until he flew to Scotland in 1941 in a bid to broker peace with the United Kingdom. Was sentenced to life imprisonment for war crimes. At the age of 93, Hess is said to have hanged himself.

Dr Robert Ley: Head of DAF - the German Labour Front. Ley committed suicide on 25 October 1945, before the trial began. He was indicted but neither acquitted nor found guilty as trial did not proceed.

Albert Speer: Was sentenced to 20 years in prison for crimes against peace and humanity. Hitler's close friend and favorite architect, he was the Minister of Armaments from 1942 until the end of the war. In this capacity, he was responsible for the use of slave labourers from the occupied territories in armaments production.

Link to Article - Photos:

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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:15 pm

We Must Not Grow Numb4
to the Yazidi Massacres


A few weeks ago, I had an opportunity to meet with six members of the Yazidi community, including journalists and activists. I must admit that although I knew and was very shaken when I first learned about the horrifying attack by ISIS on the Yazidi community in Sinjar, Iraq, listening to their account of what actually happened still stunned me beyond description

What was just as shocking and deeply disturbing is the fact that the international community has remained largely numb to the crimes that were perpetrated by ISIS starting in August 2014 against this uniquely peaceful and caring community. More than five years later, the Yazidis still suffer from the horror of those tragic events, which show no signs of abating.

To put the story of the Yazidis in context, a brief background is in order. The name Yazidi comes from the Middle Persian Yazad, which simply means “divine being.” They share many aspects of Christianity and Islam.

Both Christianity and Islam stole many of their teachings from the Yazidis

Their supreme being is known as Xwedê, who is beyond worldly affairs and is not prayed to directly. They have their own language and culture, and their centuries-old religion is among the oldest monotheistic pre-Abrahamic faiths.

Despite centuries of persecution, the Yazidis have never forsaken their faith, which only attests to their remarkable sense of identity and strength of character. They are not well known globally; their resources are limited; and their political influence is negligible.

During the assault on Sinjar in 2014 by ISIS, the Yazidis were targeted with mass killing and forcible transfer. It is estimated that between 5,000-10,000 men and boys were executed in the immediate aftermath of the attack. Nearly 7,000 women and children were abducted and sold as slaves, and subjected to torture and sexual violence, while hundreds of thousands fled. More than 70 mass graves have been discovered in the region. Moreover, ISIS obliterated the agricultural resources of many rural communities, destroying wells, orchards, and infrastructure to prevent the Yazidis’ return to their homeland.

What is especially worrisome is that there remain ISIS sleeper cells who will be ready to strike again, especially now in the aftermath of the Turkish invasion of Kurdish territory in Syria, which led to the release and/or escape of thousands of ISIS prisoners. ISIS’s objective in the area was and still is the extermination of the Yazidis, along with other ethnic and religious groups.

The most affected group resulting from the unfathomable atrocities of ISIS are young Yazidi boys and girls who are suffering from untreated psychological trauma, which is further aggravated by the continuing hopelessness and despair. It is estimated that there are more than 300,000 Yazidis still living in emergency camps under terrible conditions that remain just as bad as they were during their first few weeks of exile.

Particularly painful is the fact that hundreds of freed Yazidi women now face the stigma of bearing children fathered by ISIS fighters as a result of rape while in captivity. These women face banishment from their home community, and their children born from non-Yazidi fathers will grow up with no sense of belonging, as they have no place among them. They will become increasingly vulnerable and easy prey to be recruited by extremist groups.

Back in Sinjar, however, sporadic violence continues, reconstruction work has slowed down considerably, and drinking water for schools and hospitals is scarce. One of the biggest problems is the presence of the Popular Mobilization Unit (PMU), an Iraqi government-sanctioned paramilitary force backed by Iran. The force is predominantly Shiite. They are as dangerous as ISIS and the Yazidis in the area are terrified that if PMU ends up taking over the entire area, the condition of the Yazidis and ultimately their fate will be even worse.

Maria Fantappie, the senior adviser on Iraq at the International Crisis Group, said, “Despite having been freed from ISIS presence … the region de facto remains an occupied district where competing Iraqi and foreign agendas play out by co-opting Yazidis into rival armed groups.”

Regardless of their outcry for help and continued suffering, the international community is not providing the necessary financial aid to rebuild the Yazidis’ homes and villages. They try desperately to make their case known to whomever they can talk to, especially passing journalists who can spread the word about their unbearable condition.

There are those who suggest that the Yazidis will be better off moving to other countries because Iraq is not safe and much of their land is occupied by various militias, which obviously is not the answer. Most Yazidis want to go back to their homeland, where they lived and died for millennia.

The 2018 Nobel Peace Prize co-winner Nadia Murad, who was recognized for her efforts to end sexual violence, stated: “We suffered but didn’t give up. We were not helped and rescued when ISIS attacked, but I hope this recognition means that the international community will help us recover from this atrocity and will prevent such attacks against other communities like us in the future.”

There are a number of measures that must be taken immediately to prevent further displacement and deprivation, which the Yazidis have endured so painfully. The media campaign that began on the fifth anniversary of the ISIS invasion — #DoNotForgetUs — designed to draw international attention, has thus far produced limited results. Nevertheless, this campaign must continue and be supported by the EU and the US.

Western powers along with the Iraqi government should initially provide a relatively small amount of $250 million, which can go a long way to begin the process of rehabilitation. The US should assume greater responsibility for the plight of the Yazidis, as the rise of ISIS is a horrific byproduct of the ill-fated Iraq War.

The US, with the support of European powers, should push the UN to establish better monitoring for early warning signs of impending atrocities, and preserve evidence of Yazidis’ murder, which will be critically important in prosecuting ISIS fighters for their unspeakable crimes. In addition, mass graves should be exhumed by a special UN contingency to identify some of the victims and push for the creation of an international tribunal to put on trial many high-ranking ISIS commanders and charge them with crimes against humanity.

As long as ISIS and other militias continue to operate in the area, the Iraqi government should fund the recruitment of locals to form a regional security force. This local force will have a vested interest in protecting their areas, and it should be bolstered by a fairly small US and EU military force to be based in Sinjar to protect the Yazidis and allow their exiles to return home. The Iraqi government must also bear a special responsibility to restore some normalcy by finding the necessary funding for rebuilding schools, hospitals, and infrastructure, and returning services to Sinjar.

Having suffered atrocities of such magnitude with little help from the outside, the Yazidis, for good reason, no longer trust anyone, as they feel betrayed and abandoned to the mercy of ISIS. It is critical then to begin a process of reconciliation that would allow for the nurturing of trust, which gradually can be realized if the above measures are in fact implemented in good faith.

The international community cannot and must not grow numb to massacres, as this will continue to haunt us, only with greater force. The Yazidis have paid the ultimate price, and no other ethnic group should be subjected to the same fate by any perpetrator with impunity, and with apathy from the international community.

Dr. Alon Ben-Meir is a professor of international relations at the Center for Global Affairs at NYU. He teaches courses on international negotiation and Middle Eastern studies

https://www.algemeiner.com/2019/10/30/w ... massacres/
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Mon Nov 04, 2019 3:47 pm

Yazidi Advocate Reacts
To ISIS Leader's Death


NPR's Lulu Garcia-Navarro speaks to Hadi Pir, vice president of a Yazidi advocacy organization, about how the minority group targeted by ISIS feels about the death of its leader.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

It's been one week since President Trump announced the death of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. And a week in which some of the people ISIS targeted have been asking what's next for us - among them, the Yazidis, a minority community in Syria and northern Iraq who were systematically raped and murdered by ISIS. Many displaced survivors of that genocide are still living in refugee camps.

Hadi Pir is vice president of a Yazidi advocacy organization. He spent years working with the U.S. Army in Iraq, and he joins us now from Lincoln, Neb., where he's also a high school teacher.

Welcome.

HADI PIR: Thank you. Thank you for having me.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: What was the mood this past week in the Yazidi community after al-Baghdadi's death was announced?

PIR: So the news was very welcome among the Yazidis here in America and also in Iraq. They showed their appreciation to the U.S. government, especially to the team who went and did this mission. But at the same time, there is also this question that among Yazidis, and I also share that same thing, that when bin Laden was killed and then we had the same question that the ideologies there, there's fear, now there would be a new leader, a new bin Laden with a new flag. And that's exactly what happened. So the same question now the Yazidis are opposing, is it going to be a new al-Baghdadi with a new flag since the ideology's there?

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Yeah, we saw this past week the appointment of a new leader of ISIS. I know from having spoken to other Yazidis one of the main concerns is about justice - how will the Yazidi people get justice for what they've suffered? What does that look like? Is that prosecutions in court? Is that what you would like to see happen?

PIR: We understand that not every single person who joined ISIS will be able to go to the court, and that's probably not even feasible, I mean, from a realistic point of view. But we want to see that there is a justice that's been - there's an investigation that's been targeting the leaders and find out some of the people that were in charge of raping the Yazidi women and who are the people who decide what they're going to do with the Yazidis when they will attack their areas.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Hadi, have Yazidis been able to return to their towns and villages to rebuild? We've heard President Trump say that ISIS has lost all of its territories. Does that mean that the Yazidi community has been able to return to their historic places?

PIR: In Iraq, there's two towns close to Mosul - Bashir (ph) and Barzan (ph). And most of the Yazidis did return to their homes. And we, as an organization, we help them build their houses and replant their olive trees. But unfortunately, in Sinjar about 70% of Yazidis still in refugee camps. And Iraqi government and Kurdistan Regional Government and other parties are not willing to solve that conflict so, for these people to return.

GARCIA-NAVARRO
: What do you think needs to happen right now for Yazidis to feel secure?

PIR: So there is many ideas now how we can make this happen and we have many discussions with the U.S. government and policymakers. I believe for this to happen, that the Yazidis and Christians and Shia and other minorities in the areas, they should be responsible of their own security. So these people be in, more in the Iraqi army, more be in police and border police. But they will be protecting their areas and the people who can take decisions are from those areas, some sort of guarantee that they will protect their own people.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Hadi Pir is vice president of Yazda, a Yazidi advocacy group. He joined us from Lincoln, Neb.

Thank you very much.

PIR: Thank you so much for having me.

https://www.npr.org/2019/11/03/77581874 ... 2879280880
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Nov 05, 2019 9:51 pm

Yazidi woman kidnapped
by ISIS aged 17


A Yazidi woman has described how she was kidnapped by ISIS as a teenager and repeatedly raped and beaten by terror boss Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi during his final years as leader

The unnamed woman was kept as a slave for months while the on-the-run boss desperately moved to towns and deserts in eastern Syria near the Iraqi border to seek safety as the extremists' domains crumbled.

In his last months, al-Baghdadi became obsessed with his security before the brutal leader, once hailed as 'caliph', blew himself up during an October 26 raid by U.S. special forces on his heavily fortified safe house.

The Yazidi girl, who was freed in a U.S.-led raid in May, said al-Baghdadi first tried to flee to Idlib in late 2017.

In his last months, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi became obsessed with his security before the brutal leader, once hailed as 'caliph' (pictured in April 2019)

She said one night she was loaded into a three-vehicle convoy that included the IS leader, his wife and his security entourage, headed for the province.

The convoy reached a main road but then turned around, apparently fearing it would come under attack, said the girl, who was 17 at the time.

For about a week they stayed in the southeastern Syrian town of Hajin, near the Iraqi border. Then they moved north to Dashisha, another border town in Syria within IS-held territory.

There, the Yazidi teen stayed for four months at the home of al-Baghdadi's father-in-law, a close aide named Abu Abdullah al-Zubaie.

Al-Baghdadi would visit her there frequently and rape her and at times beat her, the teen said.

He would only move at night, wearing sneakers and covering his face, always with around five security men who addressed him as 'hajji' or 'sheikh,' she said.

'When I asked him anything, he would not give me an answer for security reasons. Not everyone knew where he was,' she said.

In the spring of 2018, she was given to another man, who took her out of Dashisha. That was the last time she saw al-Baghdadi, though he sent her a piece of jewelry as a gift, the teen said.

It appears al-Baghdadi then moved from place to place in eastern Syria for the next year as one IS stronghold after another fell to U.S.-backed Kurdish-led forces, before heading to Idlib sometime in the spring.

Al-Baghdadi would visit her there frequently and rape her and at times beat her, the teen said (stock photo)

During that time, al-Baghdadi was a 'nervous wreck,' pacing up and down and complaining of treason and infiltrations among his 'walis,' or governors of the group's self-declared provinces, his brother-in-law, Mohamad Ali Sajit, said in an interview with Al-Arabiya TV aired last week.

'This is all treason,' Sajit recalled al-Baghdadi shouting.

Sajit, an Iraqi who was married to another of al-Zubaie's daughters, was arrested by Iraqi authorities in June.

He said he saw al-Baghdadi several times over 18 months, starting in Hajin in late 2017. The last time was in the desert regions along the Syrian-Iraqi border not long before Sajit's own capture. He said al-Baghdadi entrusted him with delivering messages on flash drives to lieutenants inside Iraq.

It appears al-Baghdadi then moved from place to place in eastern Syria for the next year as one ISIS stronghold after another fell to U.S.-backed Kurdish-led forces (pictured in April 2019)

Iraqi and Syrian Kurdish officials have said they separately cultivated sources that led to the ISIS leader, and Sajit is believed to be one of them. A U.S. official said it seemed the Syrian Kurds managed to get a 'guest' inside al-Baghdadi's inner circle whose information was key in the hunt.

Sajit said al-Baghdadi's movements were heavily restricted, more so as greater IS territory was lost. He walked around with a suicide belt, even slept with one near him, and made his aides also carry belts. He never used a cellphone; only his aide Abu Hassan al-Muhajer did, using a Galaxy 7, Sajit said.

The stress worsened the ISIS leader's diabetes, and he had to constantly monitor his blood sugar and take insulin. He didn't fast during the holy month of Ramadan and forced his aides not to fast as well, Sajit said.

At times, al-Baghdadi was disguised as a shepherd, he said. When al-Baghdadi's security chief, Abu Sabah, got wind of a possible raid on the desert Syrian-Iraqi border area where they were hiding they took down their tents and hid al-Baghdadi and al-Muhajer inside a pit covered with dirt, Sajit said.

They let sheep roam around on top of the pit to further disguise it. Once the threat of the raid was over, they returned and put the tents back up, he said.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/articl ... ed-17.html
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:29 pm

Link from Piling:

Turkey bombed villages
close to Mount Sinjar


Turkey has bombed villages northwest of Mount Sinjar. This is not an isolated incident – Turkey has repeatedly bombed the Sinjar region of Iraq. These acts of aggression pose immense danger to the population of Sinjar and deserve condemnation by the international community

Since Sinjar has been liberated from ISIS, I have repeatedly called on the government of Iraq to provide proper security and integrate all armed groups into the official security forces.

To date, no such measures have been taken

Today, after over five years of brutal attacks by ISIS on my community, the majority of Yazidis remain displaced in IDP camps. While some areas of Sinjar were liberated over three years ago, the Yazidis that are living in IDP camps only a few hours away from their homeland have not been able to return. The lack of access to a safe and dignified environment, proper education, and other basic services makes the future of this religious minority continuously uncertain.

The time is now. Iraq must undertake its responsibility to provide proper security and integrate all armed groups into the official security forces. Without action, Yazidis will remain isolated from their homeland and continue to suffer from local and regional disputes. As is evident in the recent protests, the lack of action from the Iraqi government poses a great risk to all the country's citizens.

Nadia Murad
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Nov 07, 2019 12:04 am

Turkey bombs Sinjar villages
where genocide survivors live


Image
A general view of the Yazidi refugee camp on Mount Sinjar
(photo credit: KHALID AL MOUSILY / REUTERS)

Turkey’s attacks on Syria and Iraq escalated on Tuesday as its warplanes bombed Sinjar two days in a row, striking at villages inhabited by the Yazidi minority. Yazidis survived the ISIS genocide, but they have been targeted in both Afrin in Syria, which Turkey invaded in January 2018, and in eastern Syria, where Turkey is carrying out an invasion against Kurdish fighters. Turkey claims it is fighting “terrorists,” but locals say airstrikes and attacks by Turkish-backed militants have caused civilians to flee.

Turkey claims it is operating against “security concerns,” but its attacks on Syria have led to 200,000 people fleeing, including 14,425 who had to flee all the way to Iraq and now live in refugee camps in the Kurdistan autonomous region. In Sinjar, Yazidis were subjected to genocide by ISIS in 2014, thousands of them being massacred and their bodies dumped in mass graves. In addition, 3,000 of them – mostly women and children kidnapped and enslaved by ISIS – are still missing.

Turkey did not operate to stop the genocide in 2014, and when ISIS occupied areas along its border near Tel Abyad, Ankara did not invade Syria. However, once members of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units had helped save Yazidis and helped defeat ISIS in areas such as Kobane and Tel Abyad in northern Syria, Turkey invaded the area.

“Turkey bombed my village named Bara in Sinjar, Iraq this morning,” wrote Dawood Saleh on Facebook. “Turkey is destroying the wreckage that ISIS has left from our homes.”

Nadia Murad, a Yazidi genocide survivor who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2018, wrote that “Turkey has bombed villages in northwest of Mount Sinjar. This is not an isolated incident; Turkey has repeatedly bombed the Sinjar region of Iraq. These acts of aggression pose immense danger to the population of Sinjar and deserve condemnation by the international community.”

Murad has called on the Iraqi government to help Yazidis, of which some 300,000 are still displaced, return home. She has asked the government to provide security and remove armed militias that operate in Sinjar, but the Iraqi government has not done so and now faces protests in Baghdad for its corruption and incompetence.

According to the Yazidi news site Ezidi Press, three were injured in the airstrike on Tuesday, which was the third airstrike in two days. According to activist Mirza Dinnayi, the Monday airstrike hit a private home in Khanasor, north of Sinjar near the Syrian border.

TURKEY BOMBED Sinjar in April 2017, claiming it was targeting the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), but killed Kurdish Peshmerga from a different Kurdish party. In August 2018, Turkey carried out an airstrike targeting Zeki Sengali, a PKK leader who was traveling from a commemoration at Kocho, site of the Yazidi genocide. A cemetery for PKK fighters was also hit by an airstrike.

In July 2019, Turkish airstrikes hit near a refugee camp at Makhmour in northern Iraq. Baghdad has complained to Ankara about the airstrikes in the past, but Turkey says it will continue. Iraq, according to the media outlet Kurdistan24, has sent dozens of letters of protest. Turkey also has thousands of soldiers in a dozen bases and outposts in northern Iraq, where it is fighting a low-level conflict against the PKK. It has expanded operations since 2015, when a ceasefire between the PKK and Turkey broke down.

In northern Syria, a Turkish joint patrol with Russia in Kobane came under protest by local civilians, who threw shoes and eggs, and cursed the patrol. Kobane was the scene of a huge battle with ISIS in 2014 and 2015 when the city was under siege. It was that battle that led the YPG to become well-known in its fight against ISIS and led the US to increase support for the YPG. Turkey viewed that support as the US working with the PKK and launched an invasion a month ago on October 9 to destroy the YPG along the border.

However, the impact of that attack has led to 200,000 people being displaced. A women’s collective called Jinwar was evacuated this week after shelling by Turkish-backed militants forced the women to flee. In addition, Christian villages along the Khabour River plain and other areas have felt threatened in Syria by Turkey’s offensive. Home to 20,000 people in 2015, now there are only 1,200, an activist said on Tuesday. Yazidis have also had to flee from Syria due to Turkey’s invasion. The international community has done nothing for Yazidis in Sinjar or Syria, or for any other minorities affected by the airstrikes and invasion.

https://www.jpost.com/Middle-East/Turke ... c11sQqnbvg
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Re: Yazidi UPDATES genocide has occurred and is ongoing

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Nov 07, 2019 2:04 am

Shingal Yezidis express fear for their future as Turkish airstrikes said to continue

The Yezidi village of Bara was struck for the second time in two days on Tuesday evening, following another suspected Turkish airstrike in a nearby village the day before

Situated north of Mount Shingal, which sheltered thousands of the religious minority against the ISIS onslaught in 2014, the strike was said to be targeting Kurdish forces in the area.

Three people are believed to have been injured in the Tuesday offensive,according to Yezidi media outlet EzidiPress. No civilians were reported to have died.

The village was also struck on Monday, following an airstrike in Khanasor, northwest of Mount Shingal. The strike in Khanasor reportedly targeted a base of the Shingal Protection Units (YBS), a Yezidi militia operating in the Shingal area.

Dawood Saleh, a Yezidi genocide survivor and writer based in the US is from the village of Bara.

‘My whole family worked for so many years until we were able to build a big house, a beautiful house in Bara village. When ISIS attacked on August 3, 2014, our house was bombed. I feel that Turkey is finishing what ISIS started. Every Yezidi feels that way,” Saleh told Rudaw English.

“Sinjar is never again going to be a peaceful home for the Yezidis,” he added.

He also blasted Turkey’s premise of targeting Kurdish “terrorist” militias to conduct airstrikes in the area, calling it “irrelevant and unacceptable”.

“Yezidis have faced so many genocides at the hands of Turks throughout history,” he said, adding that the Yezidi term for genocide- ferman- was used in the Ottoman era to describe operations carried out by the Ottoman Empire, in which the ethnoreligious minority faced severe persecution.

The continued dangers in the region have left the community hopeless, Salih said.

“We were expecting the world to stand with us, bring justice to the Yezidi people and help us to rebuild and return to our homeland. Instead we see that nothing is going to happen.”

Since liberation from ISIS in December 2015, Shingal has been controlled by a variety of armed groups, including the Iraqi army, the Peshmerga, the People’s Protection Units (YPG) and Iranian-backed Popular Mobilization Forces (Hashd al-Shaabi in Arabic). Yezidis have also set up their own militias, some of which are affiliated with larger groups.

Turkey justifies its strikes by claiming Mount Shingal is host to PKK positions. The area of Shingal, otherwise known as Sinjar, was subject to a spate of airstrikes in 2018, one of which killed prominent local PKK commander Zaki Shingali alongside four YBS fighters in an airstrike in August 2018.

Ankara has yet to confirm it conducted the strikes in Bara. However, the Turkish defense ministry yesterday confirmed it had bombed Haftanin, in the Qandil mountains of the Kurdistan Region. It said 2 PKK militants were killed in the strike.

Nobel Peace Prize laureate Nadia Murad highlighted repeated Turkish attacks on Shingal in a statement published yesterday.

“This is not an isolated incident,” she wrote.

“Turkey has repeatedly bombed the Sinjar region of Iraq- these acts of aggression pose immense danger to the population of Sinjar and deserve condemnation by the international community.”

She added that the future of her people is “increasingly uncertain,” and called on Iraq to integrate “all armed groups into the official security forces.”

Murad has previously spoken of the obstacles to rebuilding Shingal due to the presence of various armed forces in the region, including disputes between the federal Iraqi and regional Kurdish armies.

“Now there is no ISIS, but we cannot go back [to Shingal] because the Kurdish government and Iraqi government, they are fighting [over] who will control my area”, she told US President Donald Trump in July.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/kurdistan/06112019
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