Mzaad

UK acknowledges ‘acts of genocide’ against Yazidis by ISIL

Leila Shamo displays tattoos she made while enslaved by ISIL fighters at her home near Khanke camp, near Dohuk, Iraq. Shamo, 34, wrote the names of her husband and two sons on her right forearm. On the inside of her left forearm, she wrote the date ISIL captured them all together; August 8, 2014 [File: Maya Alleruzzo/AP Photo]
Leila Shamo displays tattoos she made while enslaved by ISIL fighters at her home near Khanke camp, near Dohuk, Iraq. Shamo, 34, wrote the names of her husband and two sons on her right forearm. On the inside of her left forearm, she wrote the date ISIL captured them all together; August 8, 2014 [File: Maya Alleruzzo/AP Photo]
The ISIL (ISIS) group engaged in “acts of genocide” against the Yazidi people in 2014, according to the UK.

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The UK’s decision was made on Tuesday in response to a verdict by the German Federal Court of Justice that convicted a former ISIL fighter guilty of acts of genocide and crimes against humanity on the ninth anniversary of ISIL’s atrocities against the Yazidi population.

In the Sinjar region of Iraq in 2014, ISIL fighters systematically killed and enslaved thousands of men and women they considered “infidels” due to their religious beliefs.

While many fled to camps for internally displaced people (IDP) in Syria and Iraq, others found refuge abroad.


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Britain’s Minister of State for the Middle East, Lord Ahmad, said the Yazidi population “suffered immensely at the hands of Daesh [ISIL] nine years ago, and the repercussions are still felt to this day. Justice and accountability are key for those whose lives have been devastated.”

He added: “Today, we have made the historic acknowledgement that acts of genocide were committed against the Yazidi people. This determination only strengthens our commitment to ensuring that they receive the compensation owed to them and can access meaningful justice.

“The UK will continue to play a leading role in eradicating Daesh, including through rebuilding communities affected by its terrorism and leading global efforts against its poisonous propaganda.”

An Iraqi Yazidi refugee boy attends a commemoration in Thessaloniki, Greece, to mark three years since ISIL launched what the United Nations said was a genocidal campaign against Yazidis [File: Alexandros Avramidis/Reuters]
An Iraqi Yazidi refugee boy attends a commemoration in Thessaloniki, Greece, to mark three years since ISIL launched what the United Nations said was a genocidal campaign against Yazidis [File: Alexandros Avramidis/Reuters]
The UK recognises five genocides: the Holocaust, Rwanda, Srebrenica, Cambodia and now the massacres against the Yazidi people.

Nadia Murad, president of Nadia’s Initiative, advocating for survivors of sexual violence, welcomed the move as a “significant gesture to the Yazidi people, as we continue to fight for accountability”.

“I hope that the British government will now begin to seek justice for the victims by holding British-born fighters to account. The world cannot afford to let [ISIL] members walk free. It sends a message to the world that you can murder and rape with impunity”

In 2021, a Frankfurt court sentenced Taha al-Jumailly, a former ISIL fighter, to life imprisonment for acts of Yazidi genocide, including the death of a five-year-old girl he bought as a slave and then chained up in the hot sun to die.

In June, Germany jailed a woman who joined ISIL for more than nine years for crimes against humanity after she kept a Yazidi woman as a slave.

The UK’s ambassador to Iraq, Stephen Hitchen, will formally announce the decision to recognise the treatment of the Yazidi people as genocide at a commemoration event in Baghdad, Iraq.

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Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury

Dulal Ahmed Chowdhury is the Editor of The Daily Dazzling Dawn. Previously, he has been serving in important positions in all the famous national dailies of the Bangladesh since the nineties. He has played a commendable role in journalism by participating in various events at the national and international levels. United Nations Conference, World Climate Conference, SAARC Summit are notable among them.

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