New Yezidi Genocide Memorial inaugurated in Sinjar
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A new grand memorial site was opened on Wednesday in the presence of UN officials, Yezidi religious leaders, NGOs, Iraqi officials and representatives from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).
The event was hosted by the International Organization for Migration in Iraq (IOM) and Nadia’s Initiative, a nonprofit organization founded by Yezidi Nobel Peace Prize winner, Nadia Murad, who also spoke at the event.
“Immortalizing the lives lost to the genocide, the memorial offers a place for collective remembrance,” the IOM in Iraq said in a post on the social media platform X.
1⃣ Today's opening of the Yazidi Genocide Memorial was attended by govt officials + @nadiamurad + religious leaders + members of the Yazidi community in Solagh, Sinjar. @UNIraq @IOM_MENA @GGigauriIOM @nadiainitiative @USAID @USEmbBaghdad @USCGERBIL pic.twitter.com/YuA45gJESO— IOM Iraq (@IOMIraq) October 18, 2023
The IOM said the new memorial is located near the “Grave of Mothers,” where many older Yezidi women were killed by ISIS during the Yezidi genocide in 2014.
“ISIS kidnapped and sexually enslaved many Yazidi elder women in this site, making it a place of deep significance,” Yezidi activist Saad Murad wrote on the social media platform X.
The IOM said the monument was accomplished with support from USAID and Nadia’s Initiative.
Delivered a speech on behalf of His Excellency @masrourbarzani at the Inauguration of the Yazidi Genocide Memorial Site.— Dr. Dindar Zebari (@KRG_Coordinator) October 18, 2023
I emphasized the heinous nature of the offenses perpetrated against the Yazidi Kurds by ISIS. KRG advocated for Intl recognition of the Yazidi genocide. pic.twitter.com/j8uiWMLyxI
In the ceremony, Dr. Dindar Zebari, the KRG Coordinator for International Advocacy, who attended on behalf of Kurdistan Region Prime Minister Marrour Barzani, delivered a speech and highlighted the brutality of the crimes committed by ISIS against Yezidis.
He underlined that it is the “responsibility of the federal government [to] prosecute terrorists for international crimes and compensate victims and their families.”
Moreover, he said the KRG has taken several steps over the last few years to help the Yezidis, such as the establishment of a Ministerial Committee to recognize the crimes of ISIS as genocide at the international level.
Furthermore, he mentioned that the Kurdistan Region’s Parliament recognized the crimes as genocide.
He also said a committee was created to rescue missing Yezidi’s, and so far as of May 15, 3,562 people were rescued.
Moreover, he added that the Kurdistan Region had prepared a bill to establish a special court for ISIS crimes with the support of UNITAD.
“But the Federal Supreme Court rejected the bill and the issue remains unresolved, while international parties and relatives of the victims demanded justice for ISIS terrorists and compensation.”
“We emphasize that the (Oct. 2020) Sinjar agreement signed between the KRG and the federal government under the auspices of the UN should be implemented, because the best solution for peace, security, reconstruction of the region and the return of refugees is necessary.”
“It is up to the federal government and international organizations, especially UNAMI, to do their best (to implement the Sinjar agreement.”