Yazidis say aid provided by governments fails to reach refugees

Lena Badeyan
Public Radio of Armenia

No one knows how many Yazidis were killed in Iraq massacres, but some estimates suggest the number reaches 20 thousand. Representatives of two NGOs, who had taken the money raised in Armenia to Yazidis who found refuge in Turkey, have just returned to Yerevan.

About $11 thousand was collected for Yazidi refugees as a result of fund-raising in Armenia. More than 22 thousand Yazidis have found refuge in five Turkish cities at the Iraqi border. The money raised in Armenia was enough to solve the urgent needs of 150 of them, Head of the Sinjar Union of Yazidis NGO Boris Murazi told reporters in Yerevan.

“Accommodation is the main problem the refugees face in Turkey. They live in parks that have been turned into refugee camps,” he said, adding that the money collected in Armenia was used to by 25 metal constructions, where it will be possible to live, even if the refugees have to spend the winter in Turkey.

Boris Murazi said the aid provided by governments fails to reach Iraqi Yazidis. “The German Government sent $25 million, but the money went to the Kurdish Government,” he said, adding that it’s not clear whether $100 thousand donated by the Armenian Government will reach the target or not.

Representatives of the Yazidi organizations cannot name the exact number of victims, but say the massacres constituted genocide.

Vice-President of the Yazidi National Committee NGO Sashik Sultanyan spoke about a new phenomenon widely spread among “Islamist radicals.” They have established a new business. They agree to transfer a concrete Yazidi from Turkey to Iraq against $700. He added that there are not only Arabs, but also Kurds, Azerbaijanis, Dagestani among the “Islamist radicals.”

Although thousands of Yazidis have found refuge in different countries, they see their future only in their return, as otherwise the Yazidi people will lose their identity, the speakers said.

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