Kurdistan Region announces rescue of Yezidi girl from Syria's al-Hol camp

Rusita Haji Baju. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Rusita Haji Baju. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The office of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) dedicated to the rescue of Yezidis (Ezidi) from ISIS captivity announced that a kidnapped girl was found in northeast Syria's notorious al-Hol camp on Thursday and is being returned to the Kurdistan Region.

"The 16-year-old Yezidi girl named Rusita Haji Baju was rescued from al-Hol camp in Syria, and she will arrive in the Kurdistan Region soon," said the head of the office, Hussein Qaedi, in a statement.

"The search operations for the kidnapped men and women are continuing, especially in the al-Hol camp and other areas inside Syrian territory," Qaedi added.

According to Qaedi, the Iraqi government "has not played its role in rescuing the kidnapped women."

"We have asked them for help several times, but Baghdad has not taken any step so far," he said.

"More than 3,500 women and children have been rescued out of 6,400 Yezidis who ISIS militants kidnapped during their takeover of Sinjar in 2014," he noted.

ISIS subjected the Yezidis of Sinjar to a campaign of genocide beginning in August 2014. Thousands were killed, and hundreds of thousands were displaced, most of whom fled to the Kurdistan Region.

Several were subjected to atrocities and mass executions at the hands of the extremist group for years. ISIS forced women and girls into sexual slavery, kidnapped children, forced religious conversions, executed men, and abused, sold, and trafficked women and girls across the areas they controlled in Iraq and Syria.

The KRG has committed extensive resources to find and rescue them. It created a special committee with a budget allocated for gathering information and following up on various cases.