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File photo shows an internally displaced Izadi girl who has taken shelter at a school in Dahuk, 420 kilometers northwest of Baghdad. (AP Photo)

File photo shows an internally displaced Izadi girl who has taken shelter at a school in Dahuk, 420 kilometers northwest of Baghdad. (AP Photo)

U.N. envoy on sexual violence in conflict:
“Daesh-ISIS sends prettier virgin girls to Raqqa to sell them at higher prices”

Daesh-ISIS mercenaries send “prettiest virgins” to the northern Syrian city of Raqqa to sell them at higher prices there, a U.N. envoy says.

Following her investigative mission to Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Lebanon, and Jordan to gather data on the ISIL sex crimes, Zainab Bangura, the special representative of the UN secretary general on sexual violence in conflict, told online news portal Middle East Eye on Monday that the terrorist organization is committing horrendous crimes against women, particularly against the Izadi community.

After the terrorist gangs attack a village, they strip the girls naked, conduct virginity tests, evaluate their physical attributes, and send them to slave auctions, with those considered the prettiest and youngest being sent to ISIL stronghold Raqqa, she said.

Fierce haggling usually breaks out at slave auctions, where the girls are sold naked, but leaders are the first to choose, followed by emirs and finally the fighters, Bangura noted.

Each purchaser usually takes three or four girls, keeps them for a couple of months, and then sells them off after getting tired of them, she added.

We heard of one girl who was traded 22 times and of a terrorist leader who had written his name on the girl’s hand to show that she was his “property,” the UN envoy said.

She added that during their investigation, they found out that ISIL has actually institutionalized sexual violence and is using it as a tactic of terrorism to advance key strategic priorities such as enforcing discipline and order, fund raising, and recruitment.

For example, tens of thousands of the ISIL members expect that they will “get” women to “marry” following their recruitment, Bangura said.

Having found out that the girls were using headscarves to hang themselves, the terrorist gang organization banned them from wearing headscarves in some regions, the Sierra Leonean activist added.

During the interview, she also talked about a girl who had been burned alive after refusing to carry out extreme sexual acts.

Hundreds of women and girls were abducted last year by the ISIL criminals following the fall of the Iraqi city of Sinjar, mainly populated by Izadi Kurds.

The ISIL attacks against the Izadis’ hometown last year displaced tens of thousands of people, including the elderly people and children, many of whom perished while left stranded in the mountains.


U.N. envoy on sexual violence in conflict:
“Child rape, forced virginity surgeries exposed”

New evidence has revealed how Islamic State fighters buy children as sex slaves and force them into marriage. Girls from Iraq and Syria told a senior UN official they were stripped, sold, and made to undergo over a dozen virginity reparation surgeries.

“Girls are literally being stripped naked and examined in slave bazaars,” by Islamic State (IS, previously ISIS/ISIL) fighters, Zainab Bangura, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict told the journalist during a briefing.

Bangura visited the Middle East between April 16 and 29 to talk to surviving rape victims. During her travels she stopped in Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan. Bangura managed to interview women who had escaped and survived horrific sexual assaults at the hands of IS fighters.

The girls and children were treated like cattle, she said. They are “categorized and shipped naked off to Dohuk or Mosul or other locations to be distributed among ISIL leadership and fighters.”

One of the victims was married off over 20 separate times and after each time was forced to get a surgery that would repair her virginity.

“Women and girls are at risk and under assault at every point of their lives,” Bangura said, adding that this kind of violent treatment of women was actually encouraged as part of jihad.

“ISIL has institutionalized sexual violence and the brutalization of women as a central aspect of their ideology and operations, using it as a tactic of terrorism to advance their key strategic objectives.”

Read more: ISIS releases horrifying sex slave pamphlet, justifies child rape

Horror and violence followed the girls “every step of the way…in the midst of active conflict, in areas under control of armed actors, at check-points and border crossings, and in detention facilities,” according to Bangura.

Militants even use trafficking, prostitution and ransom plots as a way to raise money, she added.

Sexual violence is used by IS as a tactic to punish, humiliate, and demoralize local populations, making it easier to get information from them and displace them.

As a result of these atrocities, these victims of child rape are growing into “a generation of stateless children,” who will remain vulnerable to IS recruitment tactics.

There have been reports that doctors have performed illegal abortions on pregnant girls as young as nine.

Many of the child victims are from the Yazidi religious minority in Iraq. Around 40,000 of them were reportedly kidnapped at gunpoint by IS militants last August. Other minorities at risk include Christians, Iraqi Turkmens and Shabaks.

A video surfaced on YouTube in November, showing IS militants laughing and joking while buying Yazidi slaves.

Many of the women have expressed feeling ashamed and are unable to restart their lives after surviving the brutal and humiliating attacks.


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