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OHCHR finds ISIS’s acts of violence against Yazidis may constitute ‘genocide’

March 20, 2015

A new report was Pages from Report on ISIS genocid 20 March 2015published yesterday by OHCHR on the human rights situation in Iraq in the light of abuses committed by the so-called Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant and associated groups. Its conclusions were as follows:-

  • Members of ISIL may have perpetrated genocide against the Yezidi community by killing, causing serious bodily or mental harm and forcibly transferring members of the group, including children, in the context of a manifest pattern of conduct aimed at the destruction of the group.
  • Members of ISIL may have committed crimes against humanity by perpetrating: murder, enslavement, deportation or forcible transfer of population, severe deprivation of physical liberty, torture, rape, sexual slavery, sexual violence and persecution, committed as part of widespread or systematic attacks directed against civilian populations pursuant to or in furtherance of an organisational policy to commit such attacks.
  •  – Members of ISIL may have committed war crimes by perpetrating: murder, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture, outrages upon personal dignity, taking of hostages, the passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgement pronounced by a regularly constituted court, directing attacks against the civilian population, directing attacks against buildings dedicated to religion, historic monuments, pillaging a town or place, committing rape, sexual slavery, and other forms of sexual violence, conscripting or enlisting children under the age  of 15 years or using them to participate actively in hostilities, ordering the displacement of the civilian population, destroying or seizing the property of an adversary.
  •  – ISIL is perpetrating serious human rights violations in areas which are under its de facto control; including torture, cruel and inhuman treatment, and extrajudicial killings.
  •  – While more information is needed on the link between the militia and the Government, some incidents addressed in the report point, at the very least, to a failure on part of the Government to exercise due diligence as regards its obligation to protect persons under its jurisdiction. Member of ISF and affiliated armed groups may have committed war crimes by perpetrating: murder, cruel treatment and torture, taking of hostages, directing attacks against the civilian population, pillaging a town or place, ordering the displacement of the civilian population, destroying or seizing the property of an adversary.
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