MOSCOW, August 16 (RIA Novosti) - Islamic State (IS) militants are responsible for the deaths of about 80 Yazidi Kurds in a village in the north of Iraq, Reuters reported Saturday, with reference to Kurdish officials.
“They arrived in vehicles and they started their killing this afternoon. We believe it’s because of their creed: convert or be killed,” senior Kurdish official Hoshiyar Zebari was cited as saying.
A witness said that Islamic State fighters spent five days trying to convince the locals to convert to Islam. After that, the men of the village were shot and the women and girls were kidnapped.
Thousands of members of the Yazidi minority in Iraq are currently trapped on Mount Sinjar while fleeing from the Islamic State. Australia, Britain, and the United States are among the countries that have already conducted humanitarian airdrops. Italy plans to begin flying humanitarian aid on Saturday. In addition, Britain and France intend to supply Iraqi Kurds with arms to help them fight IS militants.
The Islamic State, formerly known as ISIS, is a Sunni group that has been fighting in Syria and launched an offensive in Iraq in June. The group has taken over large parts of the country, with a goal of seizing Baghdad. The group has also announced the establishment of a caliphate on the Iraq-Syria border.