The 3rd anniversary of Yezidi Genocide beginning

August 3 was the day of the 3rd anniversary of the ISIS attack on Shingal which marked the beginning of the Yazidi Genocide in 2014.

Deputies of the Armenian Parliament visited the Yazidis holy place in Aknalich to pay tribute to the memory of the victims, Panorama reports.
Parliament Member, Yazidi community representative Rustam Makhmudyan mentioned that the Armenian Parliament is inclined to adopt a document concerning the genocide of the Yazidis in 2014.

According to Asbarez, Armenian National Committee of America staff and supporters took part in a candlelight vigil in front of the White House on August 3 to mark the 3rd anniversary of the Yazidi Genocide.

The vigil was organized by the Free Yazidi Foundation and the American Ezidi Center.  “The Yazidis have suffered so much for so long.  Today we need the international community to stand with us,” remarked Pari Ibrahim, Director of the Free Yezidi Foundation.  “We seek justice, security, and a brighter future for our people.”  The message resonated strongly with the audience, which also included Kurdish and Iraqi Christian community members.

In 2016, the United States House of Representatives voted unanimously to declare that “the atrocities perpetrated by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) against Christians, Yazidis, and other religious and ethnic minorities in Iraq and Syria constitute war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide.”  Similar motions passed unanimously in Canada, the United Kingdom, and the European Parliament.

In Armenia, the 40,000-strong Yazidi community – the nation’s largest minority group – is able to thrive by worshipping freely and providing Kurmanci-language education in local public schools.  The world’s largest Yazidi temple is currently under construction in the village of Aknalich, 14 km west of Etchmiadzin, in the Armavir marz.  Under Armenia’s new 2015 constitution, Yazidis are guaranteed representation in Armenia’s National Assembly, along with the next three largest minority groups: the Assyrians, Kurds, and Russians.

During the First World War, many Yazidis protected their Armenian neighbours from Ottoman troops.  Some were killed for their involvement.  On April 21, 2015, a monument was inaugurated in Yerevan to honor those “innocent Yazidi martyrs.”

According to one Reuters report, around 50 Yazidi families fleeing the Shingal region in 2014 have found refuge in Armenia.

Meanwhile, the atrocities continue, Deutsche Welle reports. Three years on, thousands of Yazidi men and boys remain missing and IS continues to subject about 3,000 Yazidi women and girls in Syria to horrific violence, including daily rapes and beatings.

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