A former Isis ‘sex slave’ who was held prisoner for nearly three years, has returned home to northern Iraq to ‘take revenge’ on the group.
Heiza Shankal was kidnapped along with thousands of other Yazidi women and children during Isis’ brutal campaign in August 2014 that swept across Iraq.
50,000 members of the religious minority group were trapped during the siege on Sinjar.
You can see Heiza’s interview here:
[ooyala code=”Nia2EwYzE6ZcLIfj5fZym-BNfPJ1W5Dp” player_id=”5df2ff5a35d24237905833bd032cd5d8″ auto=”true” width=”1280″ height=”720″ pcode=”twa2oyOnjiGwU8-cvdRQbrVTiR2l”]
Men were murdered, boys were captured to be trained as child soldiers and women and girls were sold into sexual slavery at markets.
One of these women was Shankal. She told Arab 24:
When the massacre took place in Shankal [the Kurdish name for Sinjar] and Isis kidnapped children and women, I was one of those who was taken away.
I was sold and bought. I was finally liberated and arrived to the hands of comrades and they brought me to Shankal (Sinjar).
I was surprised to see a military force protecting Shankal, so I decided to join the unit and take revenge.
Shankal joined a women’s resistance unit to fight Isis.
I am carrying this weapon to take revenge from Abu Hassan, Abu Yusuf and Abu Sa’ad, who tortured me and tortured many mothers.
An estimated 9,900 Yazidis were captured by Isis during the siege on Sinjar, and of these around 3,100 were murdered, often by being burnt alive or beheaded..
Emily Murray is a journalist at UNILAD. She graduated from the University of Leeds with a BA in English Literature and History before studying for a Masters in Journalism at the University of Salford. Emily has previously worked for the BBC, ITV and Trinity Mirror. When Emily isn’t writing about topics including mental health and entertainment, you can find her at the cinema which is her second home.