Islamic militants kill 400 Yazidis and abduct their families in Iraq
BAGHDAD: More than 400 Yazidi men have been killed and
their families abducted by militants in northern Iraq, local officials have
A senior official at the Ministry of Peshmerga, in the
Kurdish-controlled region of the country, told Sky News women and children had
been seized by fighters from Islamic State (IS), also known as Islamic State In
Iraq and Syria (ISIS), and taken to Tal Afar, near Mosul.
The men from the village of Kocho were reportedly
killed over two days - 82 on Friday and another 312 on Saturday. Earlier,
Yazidi fighter Mohsen Tawwal told AFP by telephone that he had seen a large
number of bodies after entering the village.
“We made it into a part of Kocho village, where
residents were under siege, but we were too late,” he said. “There were corpses
everywhere. We only managed to get two people out alive. The rest had all been
Thousands of Yazidis - people from a minority sect
with an ancient religion - have been forced to flee their homes by the IS
advance across northern Iraq. IS has swept across a large part of northern and
central Iraq, seizing Mosul and threatening Baghdad and the Kurdish capital
On Saturday, airstrikes targeted the group around Mosul
Dam. IS seized the dam, Iraq's largest, on August 7. The Ministry of Defence
said it deployed a US-made spy plane over the north of the country to monitor
the humanitarian crisis and the movements of IS fighters.
The converted Boeing KC-135 tanker - called a Rivet
Joint - is monitoring mobile phone calls and other communications. Two British
planes landed in the Kurdish regional capital Irbil on Saturday, carrying
Iraq’s human rights minister Mohammed Shia al Sudani
said militants had killed at least 500 members of the Yazidi community. Some of
the victims, including women and children, were buried alive, he added.
Some 1.5 million people have been displaced by the
fighting since the IS advance began in June. It comes after the UN Security
Council blacklisted six Islamist militants on Friday and threatened sanctions
against anyone who helped arm or supply them.