MIDDLE EAST

Two mass graves ‘with bodies of 40 children’ found in Yazidi district of Iraq

An Iraqi policeman collects himself as he is surrounded by bodies at the burial site for bodies found in a mass grave. (File photo: AP)

Iraqi paramilitary forces have uncovered two more mass graves containing the bodies of 140 civilians, including women and children, in an area home to the Yazidi religious minority, they said Saturday.

In 2014, ISIS killed thousands of Yazidis in Sinjar and kidnapped thousands of women and girls from the community to abuse them as sex slaves.

The Hashed al-Shaabi paramilitary alliance said it had found "a mass grave with the bodies of 20 women and about 40 children in the village of Kabusi, south of Sinjar."

Elsewhere, "in the Jazira residential complex, also south of Sinjar, 80 other bodies, mostly Yazidis, were discovered," it said.

Kurdish fighters backed by the US-led coalition against ISIS captured Sinjar from the militants in November 2015 before Iraqi security forces took control of the region in October.

As government troops have advanced across Iraq they have uncovered dozens of mass graves holding hundreds of bodies in areas that fell under the militants' brutal rule.

Iraqi officials said on 22 November they had found a mass grave in Sinjar containing the bodies of dozens of members of the minority killed by the Islamic State group.

Sinjar mayor Mahma Khalil said that since 2015, around 40 mass graves have been discovered in the region and that "all the victims were Yazidis".

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Last Update: Sunday, 3 December 2017 KSA 09:16 - GMT 06:16
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