Dr. Elisa von Joeden-Forgey is an Assistant Professor of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Stockton University in New Jersey, United States. Also the First Vice President of the International Association of Genocide Scholars, she has done specific studies in the use of sexual violence as a weapon of genocide. Dr. Joeden-Forgey was invited to address a special event at the United Nations headquarters in New York on April 28, organized by Archbishop Bernadito Auza, Apostolic Nuncio and Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations. The event, co-sponsored by +Libres, CitizenGo and In Defence of Christians, had as its theme, “Defending religious freedom and other human rights: stopping mass atrocities against Christians and other believers.”
Dr. Joeden-Forgey specifically addressed the discussion on Christian and Yazidi women and girls as sexual victims of crimes against humanity. According to her, sexual violence against women and girls is an integral part of the ISIS’ genocide methodology, as it is in most genocides. She recently visited refugee camps in Iraq to assess first-hand the violence by the ISIS, and said the Islamic State commits many forms of genocide, targeting Yazidis, Christians, Shabak Shia, and Turkmen. In our edition of THE BACKGROUNDER today, we bring you the testimony of Dr. Joeden-Forgey.
That was Dr. Elisa von Joeden-Forgey, Assistant Professor of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Stockton University in New Jersey, United States, speaking about the ISIS atrocities on minority communities in Iraq. She spoke at a Holy See-sponsored event at the UN in New York on April 28.
Just before Dr, Joeden-Forgey, Samia Sleman a 15-year old Yazidi teenage girl gave a heart-wrenching testimony of her ordeal under the ISIS in Iraq. Captured by the ISIS along with her family in northern Iraq in 2014, when she was 13, Samia spent six months and 12 days in captivity among thousands of Yazidi women and girls until she escaped and took shelter in Germany. She said that ISIS soldiers killed men and older women, including her mother, but kept girls as young as seven as sex slaves who may be sold or given as gifts to ISIS fighters. Often breaking down in sobs and tears narrating her story, she earnestly pleaded with the international community to stop the genocide before minorities are totally wiped out.
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