ISIL crimes against Yazidis constitute genocide

ISIL crimes against Yazidis constitute genocide

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n his final briefing to ambassadors, Karim Khan, Special Adviser and Head of the team, known as UNITAD, reported that investigators have reached a “landmark moment” in their work. 

“I am able to announce that based upon independent and impartial investigations, complying with international standards and UN best practice, there is clear and convincing evidence that the crimes against the Yazidi people clearly constituted genocide,” he said. 

Mr Khan recalled that the crimes committed by ISIL, also known as Daesh, “shocked the conscience of humanity”, as manifested by the group’s ultimatum to convert, or die. 

“A full scope of criminality is displayed in the awful criminality of Daesh against the Yazidi community”, he said.  “Executions, slavery, sexual slavery. Crimes against children that are horrific, and really chill one’s soul, that how on earth could such things be allowed to happen.  Yet they did.” 

UNITAD has supported the return of the remains of more than 100 Yazidis recovered from nine mass grave sites in the village of Kojo.  

Nobel Peace Prize winner Nadia Murad, who was kidnapped by ISIL, told ambassadors that her people had experienced the worst atrocities known to humankind. 

“I will never forget the grief in my mother’s eyes when she realized her sons had been executed – not knowing she would face the same fate”, Ms Murad said.  

“I can still feel my niece’s hands being ripped out of mine as we were separated and loaded onto buses like cattle. And I can still calculate what my body was worth to those who bought and sold it.”