Baghdad, Feb 4 (efe-epa).- Iraqi authorities held a funeral in Baghdad on Thursday for 104 members of the country’s Yezidi minority who were killed by Islamic State militants.
After the funeral, their bodies will be transferred to their home village in the country’s north for burial on February 6.
Iraqi President Barham Salih said in a post on Twitter that the victims were to be buried in the Yezidi village of Kocho, which is “the scene of a terrorist crime that embodies the bloody IS.”
“What happened to our sons and daughters from different religions and sects is a wound to the whole nation. Achieving justice for the victims is the state’s duty,” he added.
Yezidis, an ancient religious minority originally from northern Iraq, were brutally persecuted by IS in 2014, leaving some 5,000 men killed, about 7,000 women and children kidnapped, and a total of 300,000 displaced from their homes in Sinjar region in northern Iraq.
Nobel Peace Prize laureate and Yezidi activist Nadia Murad, who survived kidnapping and torture at the hands of IS, said in a statement that “over six years after the genocide, the families of Kocho will finally be able to lay some of their loved ones to rest.”
The 104 victims were exhumed last year from mass graves in northern Iraq and taken to Baghdad for identification and evidence collection. EFE-EPA