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Girl, 15, escapes slavery in Iraq by killing man, drugging another

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Struggle to regain freedom reveal desperation of young women.

Reporters working in Iraq and Turkey are encountering young women who have escaped from Islamic State slavery and forced marriages. Their stories reveal that the Islamic State is practicing slavery on a wide scale, primarily targeting young women. Women are being raped and some are forced into marriages.

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The anonymous 15-year-old girl sat for an interview with the AP.

The anonymous 15-year-old girl sat for an interview with the AP.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)
10/13/2014 (5 years ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: Iraq, Christian, ISIS, IS, ISIL, Islamic State, militants, Catholic, Yazidi


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Associated Press has published an interview with an anonymous 15-year-old girl, who says she was captured and sold into slavery by Islamic State terrorists, but escaped.

The girl, who remains anonymous for her protection, is a Yazidi, a member of an ethnic and religious sect that Sunni Muslims regard as satanic. The religion itself has roots in Zoroastrianism and Christianity and has been influenced by Islam. They regard themselves as pacifists and have long striven to coexist with their Muslim and Christian neighbors.

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The religious sect has counted 73 massacres in their history including the most recent one at the hands of the Islamic State. During that massacre, men and teenage boys were killed while women, some as young as 5, were taken and sold into slavery.

It was amid the violence that took place on Mount Sinjar where the victim said she was captured by Islamic State fighters. Most of her family disappeared, likely murdered. She survived with her sisters who were all taken together. The terrorists took her to a stronghold a prison in the town of Tal Afar and held. Many women she said were raped by the guards who detained them.

When U.S. airstrikes began, they started moving women out and selling them into slavery. They were first transported to Mosul, then north to Raqqa, the capital of the Islamic State. There she watched her sisters taken away and sold into slavery. She herself was sold to a Palestinian man. The fates of her sisters remain unknown, but they are likely still living in slavery.

She told her interviewer that she looked for chances to escape and her opportunity came when the housekeeper, upset at the owner, gave her a gun. She used that gun to shoot and kill her owner and escape. However, with no place to run she ended up back at the compound in Raqqa where she was previously held.

The captors there captured her again and res sold her into slavery, this time for $1,000 to a Saudi fighter. Her new owner told her she would have to convert to Islam and that he would then marry her. She did not want to become Muslim, so she drugged the man and his friends by adding a powdered substance to their tea. Once asleep, she snuck away and found someone who would drive her to Turkey.

Once in that country she found her brother. The pair then paid to have themselves smuggled back into Iraq where they have settled in a refugee camp. The pair hope to find their parents and other relatives, although it is possible they could all be dead.

It is incidents like these that make the case for powerful intervention in Iraq and Syria. The Islamic State is practicing a medieval form of Islam that relies on conquest and enslavement to secure power. People are controlled through systematic fear and coercion.

The Islamic State will not stop its conquests in Northern Iraq. Instead, they have a vision of unifying the Islamic world under their banner in a theocracy that stretches from Western Africa to central Asia.

Woe to any people who stand in their way. Although Sunni Muslims are only 10 percent of the world's sum of Muslims and the Islamic State is made largely of followers of an especially militant Sunni sect, they are absolutely ruthless in their conduct. This ruthlessness when matched against the natural reluctance of the rest of the world to fight gives them a tremendous advantage.

The Islamic State is not just targeting Yadizis, but also Christians and Shiite Muslims. Anyone is subject to enslavement, rape and even summary execution. The captured have no rights, especially if they are not Sunni Muslims. Christians are being martyred in spectacular numbers, on a scale as yet unknown because nobody is keeping numbers and survivors have been scattered across the region, fleeing continually before the Islamic State.

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