Ezidi refugee children from Shingal in the refugee camp of Esiya (EP, June, 2015)
Ezidi refugee children from Shingal in the refugee camp of Esiya (EP, June, 2015)

The terrorist militia Islamic State continues holding more than 3,500 people as slaves, according to a report published on Tuesday by the UN human rights office and the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq.

Most of those being held captive are Ezidis from the Shingal region in northern Iraq who were abducted in the beginning of August, 2014: “Those being held are predominantly women and children and come primarily from the Yezidi community, but a number are also from other ethnic and religious minority communities,” the report says.

The report once again reaffirms that the atrocities which the Islamic State has committed against the Ezidis may amount to crimes against humanity or fulfill the elements of the crime of genocide in the sense of the UN Genocide Convention. Over 10,000 Ezidis have been killed or abducted by the Islamic State. UN observers already confirmed in October, 2014 that 5,000 Ezidis were killed while 7,000 others were abducted and forced into slavery.

In its magazine Dabiq, the terrorist militia later justified its campaign, claiming to have revived an old Islamic tradition with the enslavement of Ezidi women and children. The extremists consider Ezidis as infidels who are not entitled to any rights as they are not a people of the book.

Ezidi women freed from Islamic State captivity reported how they were subjected to rape on a daily basis, including underage girls. Women and children are morever sold as slaves for a few dollars at slave markets. The report furthermore mentions abducted children, stating that the Islamic State trains and uses them as jihadists in military operations. Ezidi boys who escaped from the terrorists confirmed to have received weapon training, adding that they were supposed to take part in combat.

The Islamic States´s campaign to destroy the Ezidi minority prompted the U.S. government to act. Germany also broke with its foreign policy doctrine of restraint with reference to the impending genocide of Ezidis and delivered weapons and equipment to the Peshmerga of the Kurdish regional government.

On August 3, 2014 the terrorist militia Islamic State invaded the Ezidis´ major settlement area Shingal in northern Iraq. The 11,000 security forces of the Peshmerga who were stationed in and around Shingal fled in the early morning hours, leaving civilians to their fate. Over 400,000 Ezidis had to flee. For days, tens of thousands people waited on the mountains in the scorching heat. Security forces meanwhile discover more and more grass graves in the region´s liberated areas.