The association Voice of Ezidis, co-founded in Paris in 2019 by survivors of the 2014 genocide perpetrated by the so-called Islamic State, is committed to the support of the Ezidi community, both in France, where some refugee families have fled since the beginning of the genocide, and in Iraq, where a lot of Ezidis still reside. Voice of Ezidis defends the rights of the Ezidi people and advocates for the awareness and recognition of the genocide it endured in 2014.
The 2014 Genocide
The so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has been officialy recognized by the United Nations as the perpetrator of a genocide of Ezidis in the Sinjar area, northern Iraq. The genocide led to the expulsion, flight and exile of thousands of Ezidis from their ancestral lands in Upper Mesopotamia. Wikipedia
Ezidis have endured countless acts of discrimination, persecution and attempts of annihilation, throughout their history, especially since the emergence of the Abrahamic religions. 73 of these attacks can be counted, commanded by various the various powers that controlled the region.
In 2014, a 74th atrocious act was committed by the so-called Islamic State organization against the Ezidi community, a well-elaborated plan to destroy the very foundation of a society that was carrying high the banner of peace and the culture of tolerance.
On the 3rd of August 2014, ISIS invaded the regions of Sinjar and Nineveh in the North of Iraq, ancestral home to several minorities of the country.
This conquest was pivotal for the terrorist organization, which intended to "clean" its territory from what they viewed as infidels. The Ezidi community, depicted as devil worshippers by ISIS, was destroyed on the first day of the invasion.
In Sinjar, more than 2,000 people - mostly men were systematically killed, while more than 6,000 women and children were captured to be held in captivity and enslaved.
Some survivors managed to flee to the Kurdistan region of Iraq or the Sinjar mountain, dominating the region and considered as sacred for the Ezidis for centuries. There, they were confronted by the lack of water and food but also the constant attacks of the terrorists, settled at the bottom of the mountain.
The women and young girls who were kidnapped were directly transported to Mosul or Raqqa to be sold as slaves. They were forced to convert, were raped, humiliated, tortured and detained.
The young boys, abducted as well, were sent to training camps to be brainwashed in order to be thrown on the frontline.
The survivors have lost everything and been forced away from their homes, schools, universities or jobs. Survivors were sent to Internally Displaced People camps (IDPs), where, nowadays, more than 300.000 of them have been living for 7 years.
Currently, camps are not safe and stable places to live in due to lack of services, aid and personnel; not to forget about the indifference of governmental bodies and local institutions. Most of the Ezidis suffer from post-traumatic psychological disorders and are lacking proper help, some of them have committed suicide.