Nadia Murad’s journey is one of true determination as she fought to defend the dignity of women captured by ISIS.
I want to be the last girl in the world with a story like mine.
Recipient of the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize, Nadia Murad, makes this powerful statement in her recently published autobiography, “The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State”.
Nadia and Dr. Denis Mukwege, a gynecologist helping victims of sexual violence in the Republic of Congo, are co-winners of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize.
Nadia, of the Yazidi minority, was among the thousands of women and girls from her community who were kidnapped by the ISIS in 2014. In her documentary titled “On Her Shoulders”, she says 3,400 Yezidi women are still being held captive.
The 25-year-old Iraqi was named the UN’s first Goodwill Ambassador for Dignity Survivors of Human Trafficking in 2016 and was also awarded the Vaclav Havel Human Rights Prize.
Speaking at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, she said,
We must work together to put an end to genocide, hold accountable those who commit these crimes and achieve justice for the victims. So far, we have not seen justice for Yazidis, especially the victims of sexual slavery, the IS militants should be stood for trial for the crimes they have committed.
Both Nadia and Denis were awarded the Nobel for their ‘efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war’.
On August 3, 2014, Nadia's home in Kojo, Northern Iraq was ransacked by ISIS militants. Kojo was among the first Yazidi villages in Northern Iraq to be attacked by ISIS claiming ‘ethnic cleansing’.
Men were separated from women who were kept in a local school. Later, as the men were executed, 7,000 Yazidi women and girls were forced to a slave market. Nadia was sold to an ISIS judge and was subjected to brutal violence. She tried escaping once but was captured and brutally tortured. When she finally managed to flee, she embarked a journey to start a worldwide campaign and spoke against the barbaric crimes against Yazidi women.
In an interview with The Guardian, Nadia said,
I was an ISIS sex slave. I tell my story because it is the best weapon I have.
From being a sex slave to becoming the face of the campaign against sexual abuse, Nadia’s story is one that inspires.
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