2015 Trust Conference Action

'Support for Yazidi Women and Girls victimized by ISIS'

Presented by Murad Ismael - Co-founder and Director of Board, Yazda

Summary

Providing therapeutic support, medical services and income opportunities to Yazidi women and girls victimised by ISIS.

The Presentation

The Problem

Beginning on the 3rd of August last year, women and girls of the Yazidi religious minority in Iraq were targeted by the self-identifying Islamic State (IS) with perhaps the single largest instance of sexual enslavement and trafficking in recent memory. As part of a larger project of attempted genocide, in which men who refused to convert to Islam were exterminated in mass executions, a free society was dismantled in a single day, with thousands of women and girls enslaved overnight. IS considers the Yazidis to be polytheists and on that basis attacked their unarmed, civilian population in their homes in Sinjar. The attack displaced several hundred thousand Yazidi people who now live in IDP camps in northern Iraq. IS killed several thousand men and elders, leavening behind thousands of unsupported women and children. IS abducted over 5,000 Yazidis, mostly women and children, of which approximately 2,200 have been rescued or have managed to escape. However, most of these are severely traumatized and many have returned with significant damage to their mental, emotional, and physical health. The women and underage girls who have survived enslaved were used by the IS jihadists for sex, often being sold or passed to multiple fighters and subjected to systematic rape and sexual violence.

The Action

These survivors of genocide and enslavement need therapeutic support and medical services. Many lost their families, have no income, and lack any education opportunities. The Yazda Organization aims to respond to this crisis on three levels:

What help is needed

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