ISIS sex slave survivor, Nadia Murad returned to her home village last week and has called for recognition of Yazidi genocide in a tear-filled speech.
Murad was one of more than 7,000 Yazidi women who was kidnapped and held captive after ISIS militants swept through the group’s territories in northern Iraq. The men of her village were rounded up and executed, while some of the children were sent to ISIS training camps.
The captured women were bought and sold as slaves; Murad was bought by a man with a wife and daughter, whom she never saw. She was kept in a single room, and after her first escape attempt was beaten and raped by six militants as punishment.
After three months of abuse, Murad escaped and fled to a refugee camp. After seeking asylum in Stuttgart, Murad began voicing her story and exposing Europeans, Tunisians, and Saudi Arabia for their role in this horrific sex slave trade.
“We hoped that our destiny would be like the men and be killed, but instead Europeans, Saudis and Tunisians and other fighters came and raped us and sold us,” she said.
She went on to become an activist for the Yazidi people and testified before the United Nations in New York. In 2015, Nadia Murad earned a Nobel Peace Prize nomination for her work and became a U.N. Goodwill Ambassador. Standing on the roof of her old school in her home village of Kocho in Iraq, she called for the Yazidi genocide to be officially recognized.
“I am a daughter of this village,” she said before calling for the excavation of seven mass graves in the village. “Open a case for those that lost everything, their parents, people who cannot go back to their villages and exhume their loved ones buried around their villages.”
Yazidi fighters reclaimed the village from ISIS last week. Surrounded by these fighters, Murad said that the international community is failing to protect the Yazidi. She claims that 3,500 women and children, including one of her nieces, are still being held captive.
“The international community has not delivered on its responsibility,” she said adding, “I tell anyone that you are being unjust for not supporting a minority like the Yazidis.”
Saudi Arabia is a nation that both facilitates and participates in the ISIS sex slave trade, it was revealed last year. Eyewitnesses have reported that some of the slaves are being sold in Saudi Arabia. In May, President Trump signed the largest arms deal in history with Saudi Arabia, despite accusations that the country is responsible for the 2011 terror attacks and human rights atrocities. The deal, worth $109.7 billion, is projected to grow to a $380 billion Saudi investment within 10 years.
Iran-backed militants have been responsible for the liberation of Yazidi villages where ISIS carried out atrocities in 2014, pushing all the way to the Iraq-Syria border. However, while relations between Saudi Arabia and the United States seem to be improving, the same cannot be said for Iran.
While the issue itself does run deeper than these single actions, it can easily be argued that while Saudi Arabia – and therefore the United States – are financially contributing to the ISIS regime, Iran is working to fight the terror group and liberate Yazidi villages.