OFWI Meets with President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz during Europe Mission
OFWI completes European mission to Brussels, London, and Berlin to give voice to the victims of ongoing Yazidi and Christian genocide in Iraq.
BERLIN – European leaders must do more to halt the ongoing genocide of Yazidis, Christians and other minorities in Iraq and Syria. That was the message OFWI President Rev. Majed El Shafie and Nobel Peace Prize nominee Nadia Murad took to political leaders in Brussels, London and Berlin this week.
Rev. Majed El Shafie, Founder and President of One Free World International, himself a victim of physical torture on account of his religious beliefs, delivered an inspiring speech in the European Parliament after meeting President Martin Schulz, last Tuesday 23rd February, 2016.
The event was hosted by Member of the European Parliament, Marian Harkin MEP (Ireland) in the scope of the Freedom of Religion or Belief Intergroup and with the support and collaboration of cross-party members; MEP Miltiadis Kyrkos (Greece), Lars Adaktusson (Sweden), and Lazslo Tokes (Hungary).
The European mission follows whistleblower reports revealed by OFWI and reported in the Toronto Star of a massacre committed in Anbar province by Shia militias after the territory was reclaimed under Iraqi sovereignty from ISIS.
Ms. Harkin MEP set the scene and explained how ‘More than 3,400 women, girls and children remain in captivity under ISIS… we have an obligation to do all we can to recognise these crimes, by member states and the UN’. She went on to explain the recent European Parliament resolution recognising an ongoing genocide by ISIS, and indicated that Mr. Adaktusson would follow-up on a resolution by writing a letter to President Tusk, HR/VP Mogherini and President Schulz, to act on the resolution.
To build upon the work being done both at a legislative and grassroots level, Rev. Majed El Shafie proposed 4 solutions:
- Humanitarian support (medical, sustenance)
- Military security to protect minorities (green zones)
- Maintain security in Europe at the same time as hosting refugees.
- “We have to understand that we are fighting an ideology, not names… we must commit to educating the next generation.”
On the panel for the event we also heard from victim Nadia Murah Taha, who has given testimony at the UN Security Council and elsewhere. Nadia relives and shares her painful account of sexual slavery under ISIS.
She stated: ‘Yazidi’s were given two choices: convert or die. In Mosul, Daesh told us “we have come to wipe you out”. This happened because of our religious identity.’ She then turned to next steps: “This has gone on for 1.5 years, without effective reaction from the international community… My request to everyone is to terminate Daesh - they are a threat to the entire humanity. The International community is not moving, which breaks our hopes.”
Rev. Majed El Shafie referred to the painful testimony of torture and abuse shared by Yazidi victim Ms. Nadia Murad Taha and many others like Nadia and insisted that “this is isn’t about my story or Nadia’s story - it is about the people left behind, facing this persecution” He concluded by stating that “If we stop fighting for each other we as people have lost our humanity”.
Rev. Majed El Shafie also addressed a panel of MP’s and Lords in London February 24 with the support and patronage of Lord David Alton and the All Party Parliamentary Group Freedom Declared, on the legal basis of Genocide where OFWI was able to present a comprehensive report on the current state of play at a European and Global scale.
OFWI’s European Mission concluded with an event in the German Bundestag at an event hosted by Dr Johann Waderphul, Senior MP and rapporteur of the CDU/CSU for the Middle East region.