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‘What happened to Yazidis is nothing but genocide’ - Kurdish ambassador

The Kurdistan Regional Government’s Representative to the USA said the Yazidis in Iraq have faced “nothing but genocide” from Islamic State militants, after mass killings and expulsions from their historic homeland in Iraq.

Speaking to the Huffington Post, Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman said "What happened to the Yazidis is nothing but genocide." "Anybody who denies that, I think, is just using political maneuvering, which is shameful and despicable in my book," she added.

Detailing the plight of the Yazidis, including the enslavement of women and children by Islamic State, Ms Rahman said, "It's actually just so horrific to think that today in the 21st century, this still goes on -- that there are people who do the selling and that there are people who do the buying."

"Genocide internationally has legal obligations on everybody," she added. "All of us, internationally, by law, are obliged to prevent genocide."

Calling on the international community to do more to protect the Yazidis, Ms Rahman said that throughout Yazidi oral history, “there have been 73 episodes of genocide”. “But there's no written record, there's nothing to say that this happened, other than what the Yazidis pass on to their children," she said.

"This time, the world witnessed it," Ms Rahman continued. "For the Yazidis, it's important that not only they and their children recognize this as genocide but also the international community does so."