“IS perpetrate barbaric sexual acts against women and teenage girls and boys”

NEW YORK (CIHAN)- The Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Iraq, Nickolay Mladenov and the Secretary-General’s Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict, Zainab Hawa Bangura, expressed their grave concern at the continuing reports of acts of violence, including sexual violence against women and teenage girls and boys belonging to Iraqi minorities.

In a joint statement read by UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric, both senior UN officials stressed that they have received “atrocious” accounts on the abduction and detention of Yazidi, Christian, Turkomen and Shabak women, girls and boys, and reports of savage rapes, adding that some 1,500 Yazidis and Christians may have been forced into sexual slavery.

Bangura condemned, in the strongest terms, the explicit targeting of women and children and the barbaric acts the ‘Islamic State’ has perpetrated on minorities in areas under its control and Mladenov called on regional governments and the wider international community to help the immediate release of the women and girls held in captivity, and to support the Government of Iraq’s efforts to protect its citizens.

Also on Iraq, the World Health Organization is supporting the delivery of urgently needed health services to people affected by insecurity in northern Iraq, including tens of thousands of children, women and men trapped on Sinjar Mountain and many more who have escaped to safer areas.

The UN spokesperson said “the humanitarian situation of the civilian population on Sinjar Mountain is alarming, due to the narrow corridors for transporting essentials such as medicines, food and water. The people stranded on Sinjar Mountain also have to face soaring temperatures, which are reaching up to 111 degrees Fahrenheit.”

He added that the WHO supported health services include the deployment of two mobile medical teams to Sinjar Mountain to provide essential health services and the distribution of high-protein biscuits to civilians still stranded there.

The two teams will stay there until the evacuation of all the displaced people from the mountain. Supplies used by the teams are being replenished by helicopters.