The most persecuted
Yazidism is a syncretic (it includes elements of other belief systems) monotheistic religion, whose followers live mostly in Iraq and Syria. Its religious center is the temple in Lalish village about 60 km north of Mosul. It dates as early as 12th Century A.D., but Yazidis themselves believe it’s roots to go much deeper. Yazidi believers consider themselves ‘relatives’ of Christians and Jews. Yazidism has no interest in conquering or converting others to. One is simply born and dies a Yazidi. As one of them told me: ‘Coming into this world one is born of one’s God and one’s own biological parents. To become a Yazidi one would have to betray all of them. Why should we need such a man?
Yazidis are very cheerful, open and friendly to others. Often they have come to pay a terrible price for it. In previous years they were sheltering, among others, to Sunni Muslims from Shiites during clashes in Northern Iraq (Kurdistan). Soon after most of the saved ones became Daesh (ISIS) sympathizers and joined the genocide committed against Yazidis in 2014. Yazidis themselves count as much as 75 well documented pogroms made on them. They often say about themselves: ‘we are tougher than airplane black-boxes’.
Yazidis are a religious group most persecuted by Islamist extremists. They were an object of continuous attacks even before Daesh (ISIS) was created. In 2007 Muslim terrorists succeeded in an attack leaving nearly 800 dead victims (more than any other act of terror except 9/11). In August 2014 ISIS offensive began on territories around Sinjar – Yazidis’ holy mountain. In the first days 2800 people were killed and 13000 Yazidis were enslaved. Others, terrified by this genocide, fled for their lives. Currently the Yazidis need help more than anyone. The support they get is 5 kilograms of rice, 5 kilograms of flour, 5 liters of cooking oil – regardless of the number of members in the family. Lately they haven’t been receiving even this scarce aid. It has been reaching them only in part or once in a couple of months. Even now about 3500 Yazidis, including women and children are still in ISIS (Daesh) slavery. Efforts are being made to liberate them.
Children in the refugees camp near Dahuk
A former slave of Daesh (ISIS) with her family.
The fate of her eldest daughter and husband remains unknown