Recognize ISIS' genocide of Christians, Yazidis & Minorities


Canada must recognize ISIS atrocities against Yazidis & Christians as genocide; follow US, EU, & UK allies

For immediate release: May 3, 2016

OTTAWA – Canada has a proud history as a voice of moral clarity in global affairs. It must use that voice to call the atrocities and war crimes being perpetrated against Christian and Yazidi communities in Iraq and Syria by ISIS for what it is: genocide.

At a news conference on Parliament Hill Yazidi human rights activist Dalal Abdallah and OFWI President & Founder Rev. Majed El Shafie called on parliamentarians to follow the lead of the US, EU, and UK in recognizing the genocide ISIS is carrying out against minorities in Iraq and Syria.

ISIS continues to target Christians, Yazidis, and other minorities, enslaving or killing those who are in its destructive path. Their systemic effort to rid the region of religious and cultural diversity demands the strongest condemnation from the global community.

UN Convention on Genocide

The UN Convention on Genocide defines genocide as “acts committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

  1. Killing members of the group;
  2. Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
  3. Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
  4. Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
  5. Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.’’

The U.S. Congress, UK Parliament, and European Parliament have voted to recognize this genocide and the Obama administration has done the same. OFWI calls on the Parliament of Canada to recognize ISIS’ actions for what it is and join the international community in recognizing this genocide. Canada should do more to stop those perpetrating these crimes and bring those responsible to justice.

Rescuing former ISIS sex slaves

Working with partners in Canada and the region, OFWI has put forth a proposal that would bring 400 former sex slaves abused by ISIS to Canada with their families as refugees. OFWI would welcome the support of the Government of Canada to see this proposal implemented and it would be a way for Canada to do more in helping the most vulnerable minorities facing horrific crimes in Iraq and Syria.