Yezidi MP: IS moved most Yezidi women to Raqqa

Jihadists have moved 60 percent of Yezidi (Ezidi) women to Raqqa Province in Syria, said an Ezidi official on Thursday.

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – Jihadists have moved 60 percent of Yezidi (Ezidi) women to Raqqa Province in Syria, said an Ezidi official on Thursday.

A conference was held in Erbil on Thursday calling on the international community to help re-build Sinjar (Shingal) as most of the city has been destroyed by the Islamic State (IS).

The representative of Sinjar (Shingal) Mayor in the conference, Khudur Shingali, told Kurdistan24 that the damage in Shingal is significant, stating that 80 percent of the city has been destroyed by the IS insurgents.

Shingal was occupied by IS in August 2014 and was liberated on November 14, 2015 by the Kurdish Peshmerga forces with the aerial support of the international coalition.

He stated that the city needs almost one billion US dollar to be re-constructed. Shingali mentioned that the Peshmerga engineering team continues to clear the city from the improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

“Fortunately, no bombs have blown up after the liberation of the city. The center of Shingal is cleared and ready for the displaced people to return home, but no families have returned there yet. Some are now in the areas around the city such as the town of Snune,” he said.

He called on the international community to help reconstruct the city as the Kurdistan Region is suffering from a critical financial crisis and is unable to allocated sufficient budget.

About the Federal Government of Iraq, the representative stated, “We are disappointed in Baghdad because they have not provided any help and support to re-build Shingal,” he continued. “The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has done its best to help the city.”

Additionally, Viyan Dakhil, Ezidi member of parliament in Baghdad, told Kurdistan24 that the federal government of Iraq has ignored Shingal.

“Baghdad has many responsibilities to fulfill for Shingal and all other damaged areas, but they haven’t done anything. Their excuse for not helping Shingal is that war continues in the area,” said Dakhil.

She mentioned that recently, two Ezidi women were rescued from IS in the city of Fallujah, west of Baghdad, by the Iraqi security forces.

According to Dakhil, there are about 1,000 Ezidi children between the ages of 4-12 in the hands of IS. In addition, about 3,480 women are still slaves of jihadists and need to be immediately liberated.

“Approximately 60 percent of Ezidi women are in Raqqa Province in Syria. The rest are in Mosul, Telafar, Fallujah and other areas under Dae’sh authority,” she added, using Arabic pejorative term for IS.

She explained that one of the two ladies rescued in Fallujah was previously in Raqqa but was sold to an IS member a year ago and was brought to Fallujah.

She hoped that the offensive against Fallujah will be conducted carefully by the Iraqi security forces as IS might use civilians as human shields.


Reporting by Mewan Dolamari
Editing by Ava Homa