Posted on August 4, 2016 by Editorial Staff in Politics, Yazidis
Yazidi prince (Mir) Tahsin Said Ali Beg (L) and Sheikh Kato. Photo: AFP
FRANKFURT, Germany,— The spiritual leader of the Yazidi community, Mir [Prince] Tahsin Said Ali Beg, says the Yazidi population should be allowed to run their own affairs in the main city of Sinajr [Shingal] after it was retaken from militants of the Islamic State.
The Germany-based Yazidi leader also said Shingal should become a province and then integrate into the Kurdistan Region.
“There should be no outside interference in how the Yazidis want to run their affairs and then I think Shingal should return to the Kurdistan Region,” the 74-year-old Mir told Rudaw.
With over 400,000 people, Shingal and its surrounding areas are part of the Nineveh province for which the IS-held Mosul is the capital.
The city is one of the so-called disputed territories under Iraqi charter whose fate should be decided in a referendum which so far has been indefinitely postponed.
Though Kurdish political and military influence in Shingal has been large, the city is outside the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) although the Yazidi religion’s most holy shrine, Lalesh, is located in the Kurdistan Region along with a sizeable Yazidi community.
Thousands of Yazidis are believed to have migrated to Germany over the past decades where they constitute the largest Yazidi community outside the Kurdistan Region.
Islamic State group has captured most parts of Sinjar district, west of Mosul on August 3, 2014 which led thousands of Kurdish families to flee to Mount Sinjar, where they were trapped in it and suffered from significant lack of water and food, killing and abduction of thousands of Yazidis as well as rape and captivity of thousands of women.
Of around 5,000 Yazidi women captured by the jihadi militants in the summer of 2014, some 2,000 have managed to escape or been smuggled out of Islamic State’s self-proclaimed caliphate, activists say. The Yazidi women are forced into sex slavery and are subjected to systematic rape.
At least 430,000 Kurdish Yazidis have been driven out of their homes since August 2014 by the Islamic State, a report by the Kurdistan Ministry of Martyrs and Anfal Victims said on October 1, 2015.
Kurdish coalition forces supported by US-led airstrikes effectively pushed back militants of the Islamic State (IS) and retook control of Sinar last November.