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Troops stumble upon two Yazidi mass graves near Mosul

A displaced woman and 2 children from the minority Yazidi sect, who managed to escape from the clutches of the Islamic State militants, are seen at a house in Duhok province, northern Iraq, in this picture taken on November 24, 2016. Ironically, the barbaric group considers the community as devil-worshippers.  

Two mass graves of at least 18 members of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, thousands of whom have been killed and kidnapped by the Islamic State (IS), have been discovered as security forces fight to dislodge the militants from Mosul, alocal official said.

Kurdish peshmerga forces found the grave near the Shababit junction in north-western Iraq while scouting the area. It contained bones and identity cards that appeared to have been covered over with sandy earth by a bulldozer.

A systematic elimination

The IS systematically killed, captured and enslaved thousands of Yazidis in the summer of 2014 as they overran the Sinjar area, where many of them lived. United Nations investigators have said that constitutes genocide.

The mayor of Sinjar, Mahma Xelil, said the latest discovery brought the number of Yazidi mass graves found so far to 29,estimating the total would rise to more than 40 as the militants are driven back further.

To IS, they are devil-worshippers

Numbering about 400,000 people, Yazidis are a religious sect whose beliefs combine elements of several ancient Middle Eastern religions and are considered devil-worshippers by the hard-line Islamist insurgents.

The Office of Kidnapped Affairs in Duhok, a department backed by the Kurdistan regional government, says about 3,500 Yazidis are believed to still live in areas controlled bythe IS, many of them women and children.

Last Wednesday, 18 escaped from the town of Tal Afar in northern Iraq as Shia paramilitaries cut it off from the south and west.


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Printable version | Nov 30, 2021 6:44:00 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/Troops-stumble-upon-two-Yazidi-mass-graves-near-Mosul/article16710517.ece

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