by Dish Staff
While the White House views the operation to break the siege on Mount Sinjar in northwestern Iraq as a success, Spencer Ackerman, Mona Mahmood and Kenton Powell report that as many as 4,000 displaced Yazidis remain on the mountain and are looking for help in driving out the ISIS militants who still threaten their homeland:
The Pentagon estimated two weeks ago that 4,000 to 5,000 people remained on the mountain, and says it cannot offer a more current estimate. The US Agency for International Development assesses that perhaps 2,000 people do not intend to leave. The United Nations mission to Iraq pegged the residual population at “a few hundred who did not want to leave,” said spokeswoman Eliana Nabaa. Although Barack Obama said US warplanes and Kurdish forces “broke the siege of Mount Sinjar,” Isis fighters remain, confronted by a small and desperate Yazidi force. “We need weapons now more than food or water,” Salim Hassan, a Yazidi fighter on Mount Sinjar, told the Guardian.
Ford Sypher provides a grim update on the Yazidi women who were kidnapped by ISIS, who are reportedly being sold as sex slaves or subjected to gang rape in the Mosul prison where they are held:
Survivors who managed to escape from ISIS say the women held in its prison in Mosul face two fates: Those who convert to Islam are sold as brides to Islamist fighters for prices as low as $25, and ranging up to $150. Those who do not convert face daily rape and a slow death.
Accounts of the prison have come from women who managed to hide their cellular phones, calling relatives to describe their plight. Some imprisoned women have been forced by militants to call their families. The mother of one woman still held captive told The Daily Beast about the call she received from her daughter. She was forced to listen as her daughter detailed being raped by dozens of men over the course of a few hours. Still other women testified that multiple children had been born under these conditions, with the newborns ripped away from their mother’s arms to fates unknown.