Islamic State 'Execute 500 Yazidis' With Some Victims 'Buried Alive'
The Huffington Post UK | By Paul Vale
Posted: 10/08/2014 15:15 BST Updated: 10/08/2014 15:59 BST Print Article
At least 500 members of the Yazidi Kurdish sect have been "executed" by the Islamic State, formerly ISIS, with some victims "buried alive", according to Iraq’s Human rights minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani. The persecution of the ancient minority, who live in northern Iraq, has seen hundreds of women taken captive and imprisoned in Mosul; prisoners who, according to an official in Baghdad, are to used or sold as sex slaves.
As with other ethnic minorities in the splintering Iraq, the Yazidi, who have been described as "devil worshippers" by members of the Islamic State, were given the option to convert to Islam or die. Reuters is reporting that al-Sudani had accused the Islamists group of carrying out a “vicious atrocity”, detailing in phone calls to western media that news of the massacre had come from those that had escaped the bloodshed in the town of Sinjar.
Speaking to Reuters, al-Sudani said: "We have striking evidence obtained from Yazidis fleeing Sinjar and some who escaped death, and also crime scene images that show indisputably that the gangs of the Islamic State have executed at least 500 Yazidis after seizing Sinjar," he said, adding: "Some of the victims, including women and children were buried alive in scattered mass graves in and around Sinjar."
Mohammed Shia al-Sudani: 'Women and children were buried alive'
US airstrikes have targeted arms held by the Islamic State, with President Obama confirming on Saturday that a second round of bombing by US navy jets had destroyed artillery positions held by the extremist movement. However, news of the massacre in Sinjar is likely to put further pressure on Washington to step up military action against the Islamic State, even though the president has continually insisted that there is no long-term military solution to the problems blighting the disintegrating Iraqi state.
Al-Sudani added: "The terrorist Islamic State has also taken at least 300 Yazidi women as slaves and locked some of them inside a police station in Sinjar and transferred others to the town of Tal Afar. We are afraid they will take them outside the country. In some of the images we have obtained there are lines of dead Yazidis who have been shot in the head while the Islamic State fighters cheer and wave their weapons over the corpses," he added. "This is a vicious atrocity."
Islamic State Militants Release Propaganda Video
The Islamic State militants whose siege of areas of Iraq and targeting of minorities released a video showing fighters brandishing weapons and waving flags over Iraqi landmarks and institution buildings, the Guardian reports.
The video from Reuters also features refugees describing their flight from the militants the damage
08/09/2014 6:32 PM EDT
Fears Remain For Yazidis Still Trapped In Mountains
Some members of an Iraqi minority community on the run from ISIS militias have reportedly escaped the mountains where they had been stranded, but thousands more may still be in danger.
Several thousand Yazidis were reported on Saturday to have reached safety in Kurdish-controlled areas of Iraq and Syria.
Yet is not clear how many Yazidis remain stranded amid the continued fighting. The population who fled the Islamic State offensive this week has been estimated at between tens of thousands to 100,000 people.
Brendan McDonald, a UN humanitarian officer in Iraq, told the WorldPost on Saturday that the United Nations has still not been able to access the mountains because of the continued fighting.
Read the full story on the Huffington Post here.
08/09/2014 1:31 PM EDT
UN Security Council Discusses Resolution To Cripple Islamic State
The UN Security Council is negotiating a draft resolution aiming to cut off the Islamic State militant group's funds and supply of recruits, Reuters reports.
Thousands Of Iraqi Yazidis Flee To Syria After Kurds Open Safe Passage
Syrian Kurdish officials say thousands of members of a religious minority group have fled across the border from Iraq after coming under attack by Islamic extremists.
Ekrem Hasso and Juan Mohammad told The Associated Press on Saturday that the Yazidis fled after Kurdish fighters were able to open a safe passage into Syria following clashes with the Islamic State group.
Official: Islamic State Threaten To Execute 300 Yazidi Families
Islamic State militants have threatened to kill more than 300 families from Iraq's Yazidi ethnic minority unless they convert to Islam, witnesses and a Yazidi lawmaker told Reuters on Saturday.
The families in the villages of Koja, Hatimiya and Qaboshi are surrounded by the Sunni militants who are mounting an offensive through northern Iraq which has sent tens of thousands of Yazidis and Christians fleeing for their lives, prompting international outrage.
Islamic State 'Execute 500 Yazidis' With Some Victims 'Buried Alive' - This is sheer barbarism. No religion should control the world. Humanity, compassion and care for others should.