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Nadia Murad: from an ISIS sex-slave to a Nobel-Peace-Prize winner

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Murad was jointly awarded the prize for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war.

On August 14, 2014, ISIS took control of the Kurdish Yazidi-populated city of Sinjar (Shingal), enslaving women and committing mass execution to its men, children, elders, and so many crimes against the Yazidi people.

 

That date will never be forgotten for Nadia Murad, the Yazidi human rights activist and survivor of sexual slavery by ISIS in Iraq. Since then, Murad has survived the worst cruelties that a human can ever experience. However, she decided to speak out about the horrible experience she had and to open up the world's eyes to the crimes committed against Yazidi people, especially women.

 

On Friday, Murad and Congolese doctor Denis Mukwege were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war.

 

The 25-year-old Murad with the thin, pale face framed by her long brown hair, once lived a quiet life in her village near the mountainous Yazidi stronghold of Sinjar in northern Iraq close to the borders with Syria.

 

In a calm night, ISIS terrorists invaded Shingal, they killed men, kidnapped children in order to raise them as fighters, captured thousands of women, and kept them as sex slaves, to be raped by the Jihadists over and over again.

After being captured by ISIS, Murad was taken by force to Mosul, the de facto "capital" of the militant group's self-declared caliphate. During her ordeal, she was held in captive and repeatedly gang-raped, tortured and beaten. The militants organized slave markets to sell off Yazidi women and girls.

 

Yazidi women were also forced to renounce their religion.

 

Like thousands of Yazidis, Murad was forcibly married to a militant, beaten and forced to wear make-up and tight clothes, to be sold again and being raped by other militants.

"The first thing they did was to force us to convert into Islam", Murad told AFP in 2016.

 

Shocked by the violence, Murad tried to escape her capture. Eventually, she managed to flee with the help of a Muslim family in Mosul, who obtained her fake identity papers, in order to cross the few dozen kilometers to Iraq's Kurdistan, joining crowds of other displaced Yazidis in camps, where she learned that the six of her brothers and her mother had been killed.

 

With the help of an organization that assists Yazidis, she joined her sister in Germany, where she lives today.

 

She has since dedicated herself to what she calls "our peoples' battle," becoming a voice of enslaved women, with sexual assaults memories, years before the #MeToo movement that swept the world recently.

 

The Yazidis numbered around 550,000 in Iraq before 2014, but some 100,000 have since left the country.

 

Many others have fled to Kurdistan region and remained there, reluctant to return to their traditional lands.

Last Modified: Friday، 05 October 2018 11:33 PM
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