An escaped Yazidi has opened up about her family's experience while being trapped on the side of a mountain, fleeing persecution from ISIS in Iraq.
Jamal Jamir, 23, told CNN how his family fled to Mount Sinjar in order to avoid persecution from ISIS but were trapped on the mountain, waiting for food and water to arrive. After leaving the mountain and walking to Syria, they traveled back to Faysh Khabur, which is controlled by Kurdish forces; unfortunately, his two younger brothers did not survive the journey.
"What we do? Not enough water and dusty," Jamir said. "They died. We are poor people. We don't have any problem with anybody. We need someone (to) help us." more >>
The United Nations has declared the highest level of humanitarian emergency in Iraq and has accused Islamic State militants of carrying out "barbaric" acts of sexual violence against women and teenage boys and girls belonging to Iraqi minorities.
U.N. special representative Nickolay Mladenov said that the declaration by the UN of a "Level 3 Emergency" in Iraq would "facilitate mobilization of additional resources in goods, funds and assets to ensure a more effective response to the humanitarian needs of populations affected by forced displacements," BBC News reported on Thursday.
The Islamic State, formerly known as ISIS, has taken over significant territory in Iraq and Syria, capturing major cities, carrying out violent attacks on minorities, including Christians, and forcing close to 1.2 million people to flee their homes. more >>
The Islamic group known as ISIS has had a serious impact on the lives of young people raised by ISIS members, as well as those infatuated with the group's ideology.
"Everywhere our camera went, there seemed to be a young man eager to extol the virtues of the newly formed caliphate," VICE Media's Medyan Dairieh reported this week from the Syrian city of Raqqa, which has fallen into ISIS hands.
"I swear to Allah we will divide America in two," the young boy said. "And we'll destroy the enemies of the religion of them all, all who fight the Islamic State. We promise car bombs and explosives," he added. more >>
A priest from Nineveh has claimed that Christianity "is finished in Iraq," amid the ongoing conflict and thousands of Christians fleeing persecution from members of ISIS.
"Today the story of Christianity is finished in Iraq," Father Nawar told the Catholic News Agency. "It's a very difficult life … very, very difficult. [Families] are dying because of the temperatures, dying because they can't eat, dying because of fear, and also because of war, of bombs."
Father Nawar is originally from Nineveh, considered the Christian capital of Iraq, but ISIS forces took over the city and told Christians that they either had to convert to Islam or face death by the sword. The residents then fled to Kurdish areas in the country, where they were welcomed and able to take refuge. However, there were so many refugees there with very little resources. more >>
The United States is sending weapons to the autonomous Iraqi region of Kurdistan that is battling the forces of the Islamic State militants. A Christian leader in the Middle East says that although Christians there welcome the move they believe it is "too late and not enough."
"[President Barack] Obama needs to do more to slow down Islamic State and to stop [them] completely," Dr. Munir S. Kakish, chairman of the Council of Local Evangelical Churches in the Holy Land, told The Christian Post in an email on Tuesday.
"Yes, they need to send more aid and stop IS both in Syria and Iraq. Stop them to the point of never again [carrying out] barbaric slayings of human beings. If they stop all those foreign groups, this means all the refugees that left can return to their homes. I feel very strongly that the West must move fast and with great power. Yet I feel it is late, but never too late to do the right thing." more >>
United States and Iraqi forces have been delivering much needed aid to members of the Yazidi community in northern Iraq, and video footage of the scene at Mount Sinjar, where they have been hiding from rampaging ISIS militants, show them desperately storming helicopters to make an escape.
A video produced by news outlet Rudaw shows Iraqi forces transporting food and water to Yazidis, members of a local religious sect, who have taken refuge at Mount Sinjar (or Mount Shingal) to escape the murderous rampage of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (or the Islamic State). ISIS has been wiping out residents who do not subscribe to the terrorist group's particular extremist brand of Sunni Islamic beliefs.
Watch the video in the player below: more >>