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Yazidi Teenager Set Herself on Fire to Escape Rape, Torture at Hands of ISIS Militants: 'I Was So Scared'

( [email protected] ) Aug 25, 2016 12:36 PM EDT
A teenage Yazidi girl who was captured by the Islamic State terror group has described how she burned herself alive to escape rape and torture at the hands of the militants.
It is estimated more than 3,000 females have been taken as sex slaves by ISIS after it took over northern Iraq. REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis

A teenage Yazidi girl who was captured by the Islamic State terror group has described how she burned herself alive to escape rape and torture at the hands of the militants.

Yasmin, now 18, told the Associated Press she was captured by the group in 2014, and spent a week in captivity. She eventually managed to escape and was in a refugee camp in Iraq but could not shake the fear of being once again captured by terrorists.

One night, unable to withstand the thought of being tortured and raped by the group, Yasmin doused herself in gasoline and set herself on fire in a deliberate attempt to disfigure herself and make herself undesirable to the militants.

"Their voice was in my ears... I could hear their voice, I was so scared," she recalled. "I couldn't take it anymore. And this is what happened to me."

Yasmin, who now wears loose clothing to protect her sensitive skin, currently lives in Germany, where doctors are trying to heal her physical wounds and emotional scars.

"In the view of the Islamic State ideology, these people are not human beings," German doctor Jan Ilhan Kizilhan, who is leading the psychological treatment program, told the Associated Press. "We experienced that also in the Nazi regime in Germany, they did the same with the Jews."

The young woman is also reunited with her parents, sister and two brothers, and revealed she has has big dreams of going to school, improving her German, learning English and getting a job in computers.

"I want to be through the surgeries and be healthy again," Yasmin said. "My family is here and I want to start a new life."

Yasmin is just one of hundreds of Yazidi and Christian women in the Middle East who have experienced brutality at the hands of Islamic State militants, and it is estimated more than 3,000 females have been taken as sex slaves by the group after it took over northern Iraq.

In June, it was reported that jihadis executed 19 Yazidi girls in Iraq by locking them in iron cages and then burning them to death in front of hundreds of people because they refused to have sex with the fighters.

In its English propaganda publication, "Dabiq," ISIS sought to justify its treatment of females, saying it is permissible under early Islamic law to capture and forcibly make "heretical" women sexual slaves.

In a report, Human Rights Watch has said that the treatment of the Yazidis by ISIS amounts to genocide: "Many of the abuses, including torture, sexual slavery, and arbitrary detention, would be war crimes if committed in the context of the armed conflict, or crimes against humanity if they were part of ISIS policy during a systematic or widespread attack on the civilian population.

"The abuses against Yazidi women and girls documented by Human Rights Watch, including the practice of abducting women and girls and forcibly converting them to Islam and/or forcibly marrying them to ISIS members, may be part of a genocide against Yazidis."

Tags : Yazidi, Christian persecution ISIS, Islamic State, Muslim, Islam, rape, Yazidi girls