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Yazidis refugees flee Islamic State persecutors

Friday, August 15, 2014 - 01:51

Incoming Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi will have his hands full from the first day, dealing with Islamic State militants who threaten to tear the country apart. Jillian kitchen reports.

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Refugees by the thousands, stream across the Syrian border into Kurdistan in northern Iraq. They are Yazidis fleeing the onslaught of the Islamic State -- fundamentalists who believe the Yazidis are devil-worshippers who must be exterminated. Daily kidnappings and execution-style killings have forced hundreds of thousands of ethnic minorities like the Yazidis, to flee their homes, and run for their lives... (SOUNDBITE)(Arabic) DISPLACED IRAQI, NATHUM, SAYING: "We had nothing. We were dying of thirst, hunger. There was nothing there. We have been walking for 12 days, many people died, we feel distraught." And UNICEF says, the refugee influx shows no sign of slowing down. (SOUNDBITE) (English) UNICEF REPRESENTATIVE IN IRAQ, MARZIP BABILLE, SAYING: "Rising numbers of displaced people coming from Sinjar district and Sinjar mountains have been crossing this pontoon behind me over the last 48 hours. According to the government of Kurdistan region and United Nations more than 25 thousand over the last two, three days have sought refuge and asylum in Dohuk province just ahead." Scenes of desperation have become commonplace at the overcrowded camp. For now, the Yazidis are safe, but as the Islamic State continues its rampage through Syria and northern Iraq, it may not be long before they have to pick up their possessions and flee once again. Iraq's new Prime Minister has cautioned that the road ahead will be tough... as he begins the task of attempting to contain Islamic State and the sectarian bloodshed ravaging his country.

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Yazidis refugees flee Islamic State persecutors

Friday, August 15, 2014 - 01:51