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Nadia Murad: speaking out against slavery in the 21st century

Posted by: | February 6, 2016 | No Comment |

Inspiring instead of Crying

The Yazidis are a very small distinctive ancient, cultural, religious minority living in Sinjar, Iraq. Recently however they are facing an ethnic cleansing and the worst genocide in our modern day world. The Yazidis are facing an accusation that they are devil worshippers by the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) who are targeting its believers. They consider the Yazidis nonbelievers because they do not practice Islam. Among one of the most problematic aspects of the ideology of ISIL is that it claims justification for enslaving Yazidi women.

Nadia Murad Basee Taha is a Yazidi rights activist who was kidnapped and held by ISIL in Aug. of 2014. The 21 year old was a student living in Sinjar, Northern Iraq when she was taken as a slave among thousands of others and sold into sexual slavery. Having recently escaped captivity she has proceeded in making herself known telling world leaders and everyone of the horrors of the atrocities committed by ISIL. To say she is brave is an understatement as she continues to speak out for her ethnic and religious minority, which have violated and abused in the most inhumane and unspoken of ways in the 21st century.

On 26 Dec. 2015 Ms. Murad visited Egypt and was received by President Abdel Fattah El Sisi at his presidential palace. She was also able to give a lecture to the students at Cairo University. Among the most haunting lines during her lecture where she described ISIL militants she said that they:

“Used to force captives to pray and then rape us.”


On Dec. 17th 2015 she delivered her personal story at the Security Council of Maintenance of International peace and security. Representing one of the many thousand of ISIL victims Ms. Murad was able to give her personal perspective on the trafficking of peoples in situations of conflict.



Her appearance in the media shades light not only on herself as a victim, but also on her people who are suffering from a horrific genocide. Ms. Murad was also able to shade light on women who are suffering in war zones and all humans suffering from this unheard of barbarity of such a terrorist organization and its ideology.

Ms. Murad’s story represents the catastrophic suffering of many living in Syria and in Iraq. This story is an iconic representation of the extreme human suffering which is sometimes lost in the hundreds of headlines we see every single day. It is in no doubt a big story but it should be talked about and remembered in the media.

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