ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Pari Ibrahim, the founder and Executive Director of the Free Yezidi Foundation (FYF), has welcomed the trial of a German woman who is accused of letting a 5-year-old Yezidi (Ezidi) girl die of thirst.
The case against Jennifer W., 27, which began on Tuesday, is believed to be the first for crimes committed by Islamic State militants against members of the Ezidi minority, AFP reported.
In August 2014, thousands from the minority group suffered a genocide at the hands of the extremist group. Women and girls were forced into sexual slavery, children kidnapped, and men executed across areas the Islamic State had controlled in Iraq and Syria.
According to Ibrahim, although women accused of membership to the Islamic State are often portrayed as innocent, they are responsible for crimes against humanity just as much as the men are.
“Uninformed citizens may think that the atrocities committed by this ISIS bride perpetrator are an exception,” she told Kurdistan 24. “That is not true. ISIS women were among the most brutal. It is just by good fortune that she was stupid enough to admit her crimes to an undercover FBI agent.”
The 27-year-old German was arrested after she revealed details of her involvement in the murder of the child to an FBI informant who had posed as an accomplice, Der Spiegel reported.
The agent had offered to take Jennifer back to the “ISIS caliphate,” chatting with her in a bugged car while they drove through Germany, headed for Turkey.
During their conversation, she admitted that her husband had chained the 5-year-old Ezidi girl outside as punishment and let the child die an agonizing death of thirst in the scorching heat.
The trial is expected to resume on April 29 after it was adjourned on Tuesday under tight security at the Munich Higher Regional Court.
Read More: Four years on, Yezidis still seek justice
“The crimes of ISIS women in the beating, trafficking, and assisting in the rape, torture, and enslavement of Yezidi women was the norm, not the exception. Women participated in this behavior,” Ibrahim told Kurdistan 24.
The Ezidi activist noted that Jennifer’s trial was “only one such case of thousands,” adding Ezidi’s are especially worried that Islamic State members, including females, might not be put on trial due to a lack of evidence.
“The ISIS women are a menace, and committed war crimes. In some cases, there is direct admission. In other cases, circumstantial evidence. In many cases, we just do not yet have evidence.”
Some women accused of membership in the extremist group have claimed they have no knowledge of enslaved Ezidi women.
In March, three Dutch women captured in Syria for their involvement with the militant group told Kurdistan 24 they had not seen any Islamic State slaves. One woman suggested the slaves were “kept by the [ISIS] leaders.”
Ibrahim underlined the need to gather more evidence to build cases against Islamic State members.
She called on security services in the United Kingdom, Germany, the United States, and elsewhere to “mobilize the information and evidence against ISIS perpetrators, especially for war crimes, with immediate effect to courts and justice officials.”
“The cases must move forward.There are ISIS perpetrators who are in virtually every single European country.”
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany