Posted on September 13, 2016 by Editorial Staff in Yazidis
Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government KRG. Photo: KRG
HEWLÊR-Erbil, Iraq’s Kurdistan region,— Following a report in which the Amnesty International calls on Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) to release a Yazidi woman detained by the Kurdish forces, KRG says she is being held in detention according to counter-terrorism laws as she collaborated with Islamic State (IS).
Bassema Darwish is responsible for the death of three Kurdish Peshmerga forces during an operation as she collaborated with IS militants to ambush the Peshmerga in a house where she was being held, said Dindar Zebari, head of KRG’s Committee to Evaluate and Respond to International Reports.
Amnesty International criticized the KRG last Friday and accused the Kurdish forces of “arbitrary detention” of Darwish, a 34-year-old Yazidi mother of three from the Babira village in Nineveh province of northern Iraq.
Philip Luther, Middle East and North Africa Director at Amnesty International, called on KRG to “ensure she [Bassema Darwish] receives medical and psychosocial assistance, as well as counselling, to help her overcome her ordeal in captivity.”
Zebari responded that the Yazidi woman has been granted with all medical assistances and she gave birth while in prison for which the authorities provided her all necessary aids.
“Amnesty International has previously been ensured of her stable heath condition,” Zebari noted.
The Kurdish official further explained that Darwish has been detained according to the KRG’s counter-terrorism law and a trial has not been held because investigations are still ongoing.
“The International Red Crescent has visited her, and she has all the rights to have a lawyer,” Zebari pointed out. “However, its not safe to release a person who has collaborated with IS, and we need to await a decision by the court.”
According to Zebari, Darwish’s family and the IRC are in contact and aware of her condition in prison.
About releasing Darwish, the Kurdish official said that government cannot intervene in the judiciary system at the request of an international organization, as the judicial authorities are independent.
Islamic State group has captured most parts of the Yazidi Sinjar district in northwest Iraq 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.
According to Human Rights organizations, thousands of Yazidi Kurdish women and girls have been forced to marry or been sold into sexual slavery by the IS jihadists.
A Yazidi member of Iraqi parliament Vian Dakhil, said in August that 3,770 Kurdish Yazidi women and children still in Islamic State captivity.