Press release, August 17, 2016
Nadia Murad, a survivor of ISIS enslavement and human trafficking, and a human rights activist, will travel to Australia on August 19th-26th as part of a delegation by Yazda, a global Yazidi organisation, to highlight the situation of Yazidi people under an ongoing genocide by ISIS since 2014.
Nadia Murad, Ahmed Khudida, Yazda deputy Executive director and Nikki Marczak, Genocide scholar at Australian Institute for Holocaust and Genocide Studies will visit the University of Sydney to participate in a public event with religious communities in Sydney, Meet with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and Minister Peter Dutton as well as with Opposition Leader, Bill Shorten, visit Queensland university and participate in a public event with Global Center for Responsibility to Protect. In this visit Nadia and Yazda will raise the following points:
1-Global opposition to terrorism, radicalization and human trafficking.
2- Recognition of Yazidi genocide and accountability for ISIS for their crimes against Yazidis, Christians and other minorities in Iraq and Syria.
3- Helping refugees to be relocated to Australia. Discuss the situation of refugees in Turkey, Syria and Greece as well as the situation of ISIS survivors who managed to flee from ISIS captivity.
4- Adapting International measures to ensure the future of all religious and ethnical groups in Iraq and Syria.
Nadia will also meet some NGOs, media and other civil society organizations to raise awareness about the current situation of women and children in the conflict areas in Iraq and Syria. Nadia`s visit to Australia is occurring within her humanitarian mission to ask the international community to designate the heinous crimes perpetrated against Yazidis as genocide by ISIS and asks the United Nations Security Council to refer these crimes to the International Criminal Court for prosecution. Nadia is also leading a special campaign to prompt the Muslim world to reject ISIS and to condemn ISIS crimes against humanity, particularly against children and women, carried out in the name of Islam. Her mission includes seeking to deter Muslim youths from joining or supporting ISIS, and asking them to promote tolerance towards the beliefs of others.
Nadia is doing all this work despite the psychological trauma of the brutality and appalling sexual violence to which she was subjected, the massacre of her family, and the destruction of her homeland, Nadia escaped the ISIS fighters, recovered, and confronted her trauma. Through her advocacy, Nadia has met with numerous presidents, prime ministers, and other heads of state around the world, in addition to countless meetings with religious and community leaders and other high-level officials.
For more information about the press release please contact:
Yazda Global Organisation: 00447495062635, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.yazda.org or
Nikki Marczak email@example.com
Note for Editors:
Nadia Murad Basee Taha is based in Germany and is heading a campaign to highlight the Yazidi genocide by ISIS and obtain help for the victims. Her appearance before the UN Security Council in New York on 16 December 2015 is on this link:
She is working with international human rights lawyer Ms Amal Clooney to persuade the International Criminal Court to open a genocide investigation regarding ISIS crimes.
Since December 2015 Nadia has undertaken numerous meetings as part of her campaign to build awareness of what is happening to ethnic and religious minorities in Iraq. As can be seen on her Twitter account those she has met include the Prime Ministers of Norway and Greece, the President of Greece, the US Secretary of State, the UN Secretary General, the Foreign Ministers of Belgium and Sweden, the French Minister for Education, committees of the European and Canadian Parliaments and the US Senate and the members of the European Parliament and the parliaments of Belgium, France, Germany, Norway and Sweden and senior officials of the European Commission and the French Foreign Ministry. Prominent German politicians she has met include Mr Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament, Mr Ms Barbara Lochbihler, Member of the European Parliament, member of the Bundestag Dr Johann Wadephul, the Niedersachsen SPD parliamentary party and Germany’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva, Dr Joachim Ruecker.
Yazda is a Yazidi non governmental organisation that is providing Nadia’s support team and that works to help Yazidis through a range of projects. It is spearheading the campaign for an International Criminal Court to open a genocide investigation and lodged a report with the ICC in the Hague in 2015. It has documented the sites of over 35 mass graves of Yazidi massacre victims. In Kurdistan it runs a primary medical care centre, a psychosocial treatment and trauma support centre for former captives, educational initiatives and aid projects.
Facts: On 3 August 2014 ISIS launched a genocidal attack on Yazidi communities in the Mount Sinjar area of Northern Iraq. ISIS has justified its campaign of extermination by falsely declaring Yazidis to be ‘devil worshippers’. If captured Yazidi men and male teenagers were immediately murdered, younger boys sent off for indoctrination as future ISIS fighters, young women and girls kidnapped as sex slaves while the middle aged and older women were subsequently murdered.
The largest known massacre took place in Nadia’s home village of Kocho, where nearly every male over the age of 12 was murdered, approximately over 400 murders. The victims include her mother and 6 of her brothers. Approximately 5000 Yazidis have been murdered, 7000 abducted and 90% of the Yazidi community displaced to refugee camps, mostly in Kurdistan. An estimated 2576 Yazidi women and children have escaped or been rescued from ISIS captivity, of whom 1100 have been brought to Germany under the Special Quota Programme. Some 42 Yazidi religious sites have been destroyed and graveyards have been desecrated.