Yazidi former slave briefs UN on horrors she, sisters experienced under ISIL

by WorldTribune Staff, October 28, 2016

A young Yazidi woman from Iraq said she considered suicide after the brutality she and her two sisters were subjected to after they were abducted and sold into slavery by Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL).

Marwa Al Aliko, in an Oct. 26 event at the Israeli Mission to the UN, described the misery ISIL was inflicting on thousands of female slaves, many of them members of minority groups.

Yazidi refugee Marwa Al Aliko and Danny Danon. /Israeli Mission to the UN
Yazidi refugee Marwa Al Aliko and Danny Danon. /Israeli Mission to the UN

“The ISIL fighters took us captive and put us in a small room,” recounted Al Aliko. “We were 52 women. Every night the men would come to us and do as they pleased. After a few days one of the men bought me and my two sisters and took us to Syria.”

Recalling the cruelty of her ISIL captors, Al Aliko described her feelings of hopelessness and her thoughts of suicide before her eventual escape.

“Ten days later they separated us and I was left alone. One of the ISIL leaders bought me and another girl and told us that we were now Muslims. I refused and told him that I would only listen to him if he reunited me with my sisters. He beat me many times and did terrible things to me. I thought about suicide. They continued to move us from place to place until one day I saw an opportunity and was able to escape.”

Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon said that Marwa’s story and the plight of minority groups suffering at the hands of ISIL resonated strongly with Israel, given the Jewish experience during the Holocaust and centuries of persecution.

“Marwa’s story is difficult to listen to, but it’s a story we need to hear,” Danon said.

“It’s the bravery of young people like Marwa, who are willing to speak out, and tell the world what is happening that can shake the world’s indifference. As a representative of Israel, the state of the Jewish people, the stories of these refugees are particularly powerful.”