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EPOS Kurdish Chronicle - photodiary from KRG
   
 
 
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EPOS Kurdish Chronicle - photodiary from KRG

 
Friday, 17 October 2014 09:26
 
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by Roxane
EPOS Insights

 

LALISH CENTRE - DUHOK

On August 3rd, the jihadists of Daish attacked Sinjar (Shengal in Kurdish), that had been protected by the Peshmerga of KRG since the fall of Mosul. Equipped with inadequate weapons, guns and light artillery less sophisticated than the weapons used by the jihadists, the Kurdish fighters were  unable to take the strain, and were forced to leave the region.

Hundreds of thousands of people fled without water, without food and without a shelter to the mountains of Sinjar. Under a blazing sun, they hoped for survival.

The Yazidis are the descendants of a millenary civilization that has been subject to 73 massacres. They have survived, and nowadays constitute a reasonable community thanks to the mountains that surround the area where they live and that have been fundamental in protecting them from external attacks. But their mountains have also become a big cemetery for most of them: since the attack of Daish in August, hundreds of Yazidis have died of exhaustion, hunger and thirst.

Thousands of Yazidis have been so lucky as to reach KRG where they have sought refuge. If the Christians have moved directly to Ankawa, the Christian suburb of Erbil, the Yazidis have fled to the area of Sheikhan, where the holy temple of Lalishis is located, the  most sacred place for the Yazid. Sheikhan is officially situated in the province of Niniveh in northern Iraq,  but it is generally considered part of the Governorate of Duhok, one of the three governorates of KRG.It is difficult to say exactly how many Yazidis have died and how many have outlived the jihadists: the area is still under the control of Daish, and nobody knows how many Yazidis have been sentenced and how many have been forced to convert to Islam. Most of them have been captured. Women have been raped and killed: the youngest have been sold as sex slaves in the bazaars of Mosul, or forced to marry the jihadists, or used to satisfy the bestial impulses of the troops of Daish.

The humanitarian situation is catastrophic. Duhok had already welcomed the Syrian refugees from the region of Rojava  and the IDPs from Mosul. The flow of thousands of new IDPs and refugees is a daily challenge, and all the basic needs are clearly insufficient.  International aid arrives late, and the Governorate of Duhok is no longer able to face the humanitarian situation on its own.

The refugees are literally crammed everywhere: schools and colleges have become shelters for the homeless, and most of the children have not had the chance to start their academic year yet because their school premises are welcoming refugees and IDPs.

The Lalish Center of Duhok is the first established Yazidi cultural center in the entire region, and it has just inaugurated two new buildings.164 families from Sinjar, about 1200 people, are housed in one of them. The government provides three meals a day,  that are prepared and distributed everyday by the center’s staff. Portions are very small: bread, jam and cheese in the morning, rice or bulgur and legumes (beans or lentils sauce) for lunch and dinner. There is neither meat, nor fruit, nor fresh vegetables. Although some people are able to provide for themselves the daily portions of food, most of them  do not have this possibility and the of lack of vitamins and animal protein are already visible especially among the children.

It was expected that two doctors would came twice a month to check the state of health of the people, but they have only met them once since their arrival at the Center.

Some barbers are voluntarily shaving and cutting the hair of the people housed at the Lalish Center: most of the children, both boys and girls, have been "obliged" to cut their hair to avoid extra hygiene problems. The Lalish Centre only  has  a dozen showers, including four  external cabins.

Some refugees say that their living conditions are very difficult, but they consider themselves luckier than their brothers and sisters who do not have  a shelter and are homeless along the streets.

It is impossible to establish the number of IDPs that are currently living as refugees in Kurdistan. The Lalish Center of Duhok is collecting information about the Yazidis that have fled and taken shelters in KRG, but there is not an official database and the numbers are imprecise. According to the estimate, the Yazidis make up 90% of the total IDPs, and there are about 438,000 people distributed in the main cities of KRG as following:

Amadiyah: 20,000

Duhok: 130,000

Erbil: 5,000

Khanik: 68,000

Sharya: 55,000

Sheikhan/Lalish/Mahat: 35.000

Suleimania: 10,000

Zakho: 115,000

 

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CENTRE LALISH - DUHOK

Le 3 ao√Ľt dernier, les djihadistes de Daesh, ¬ę l‚ÄôEtat islamique ¬Ľ, attaquaient Sinjar (Shengal en kurde) prot√©g√© depuis la chute de Mossoul par les peshmergas de la r√©gion f√©d√©rale du Kurdistan d‚ÄôIrak. Dot√©s d‚Äôun armement d√©pass√© et nettement insuffisant, les combattants kurdes n‚Äôont pu soutenir l‚Äôassaut, et la r√©gion enti√®re a √©t√© livr√©e √† la sauvagerie la plus bestiale.

Des centaines de milliers de personnes ont d√Ľ fuir dans les montagnes de Sinjar, sans eau, sans nourriture, sans abri, sous un soleil de plomb, et sans espoir d‚Äô√™tre secourues rapidement.

La communauté internationale est restée muette sur le drame qui frappait une nouvelle fois la communauté yézidie, dont le Sinjar, au Nord Ouest de Mossoul, est l’un des territoires historiques avec le Sheikhan, situé en zone kurde. Ce n’est que quatre jours plus tard, après l’attaque de Qaraqosh, ville chrétienne, que l’Occident entendait parler de l’existence de ce peuple.

Les Yézidis sont pourtant les descendants d’une civilisation multimillénaire, et en sont à leur 73e massacre, l’empire ottoman n’ayant eu de cesse de détruire ceux qu’il considérait comme des adorateurs du diable, dans l’indifférence générale.

S’ils sont toujours présents aujourd’hui, ils ne doivent leur survie qu’à leurs montagnes, abris dérisoires qui malheureusement viennent de se transformer en tombeaux pour beaucoup d’entre eux. Des centaines de personnes sont mortes d’épuisement, de faim et de soif. Difficile de dire exactement combien, le Sinjar étant toujours sous la coupe de Daesh. Des milliers d’autres ont été capturées, égorgées, abattues. Les femmes  qui n’ont pu s’enfuir ont été violées et massacrées, quant aux plus jeunes, elles sont vendues comme esclaves sexuelles dans les bazars de Mossoul, mariées de force et à de multiple reprises à des islamistes, ou servent à assouvir les pulsions bestiales des troupes de l’Etat islamique.

Les plus "chanceux" se sont dirig√©s par centaines de milliers vers le Kurdistan pour y trouver refuge. Si les Chr√©tiens cherchent naturellement un abri √† Ankawa, la banlieue chr√©tienne d‚ÄôErbil, les Y√©zidis esp√®rent trouver secours et protection dans le Sheikhan, o√Ļ est situ√© Lalesh, leur Temple et leur village saints, situ√© dans le gouvernorat de Duhok. Mais ici, la situation humanitaire est catastrophique. Duhok avait d√©j√† accueilli des r√©fugi√©s syriens, puis ceux de Mossoul. Faire face √† l‚Äôafflux de centaines de milliers de personnes suppl√©mentaires est un d√©fit quotidien, et l‚Äôaide internationale longue √† arriver est tr√®s nettement insuffisante.

Les r√©fugi√©s se sont entass√©s partout o√Ļ cela √©tait possible, mais des milliers sont toujours sans abri, dans les rues, et sans le moindre secours. Les enfants de la r√©gion n‚Äôont toujours pas effectu√© leur rentr√©e scolaire, les √©coles et les lyc√©es servant de centres d‚Äôh√©bergement.

Le Centre Lalish de Duhok est un centre culturel y√©zidi et venait d‚Äôinaugurer ses nouveaux locaux. Il accueille aujourd‚Äôhui dans l‚Äôun de ses deux b√Ętiments neufs, 164 familles de Sinjar, soit environ 1200 personnes. Le gouvernement fournit √† chacune trois repas par jour que pr√©parent et distribuent ¬†les employ√©s du Centre. Du pain, de la confiture et du fromage le matin, des c√©r√©ales (riz, boulgour‚Ķ) et des l√©gumineuses (haricots ou lentilles en sauce) pour le d√©jeuner et le d√ģner. Les portions sont tr√®s r√©duites et ne contiennent jamais de viande, de fruits ou de l√©gumes. Ceux qui ont un peu d‚Äôargent cuisinent dans la cour pour am√©liorer l‚Äôordinaire, mais la plupart ne peuvent offrir √† leurs enfants les vitamines qui manquent au menu, et certains pr√©sentent d√©j√† des signes de carence.

Il est prévu que deux médecins passent deux fois par mois, mais les réfugiés ne les ont pas vus depuis un mois déjà.

Des coiffeurs bénévoles coupent les cheveux de ceux qui le souhaitent, et beaucoup d’enfants, y compris des petites filles ont les cheveux ras pour éviter des problèmes d’hygiène supplémentaires, le Centre Lalish ne disposant que d’une douzaine de douches pour 1200 personnes, dont quatre cabines à l’extérieur.

Certains réfugiés expliquent que leurs conditions de vie sont difficiles, mais qu’ils s’estiment chanceux par rapport à leurs compatriotes toujours sans abri, et pire encore, ceux restés prisonniers dans le Sinjar.

Le nombre de r√©fugi√©s qui vivent aujourd‚Äôhui au Kurdistan est impossible √† √©tablir actuellement. Pour les villes qui accueillent des Y√©zidis et o√Ļ ils repr√©sentent au moins 90 % des r√©fugi√©s, le Centre Lalish de Duhok donne l‚Äôestimation suivante:

Amadiyah : 20,000

Duhok : 130,000

Erbil : 5,000

Khanik : 68,000

Sharya : 55,000

Sheikhan/Lalesh/Mahat : 35,000

Suleymaniye : 10,000

Zakho : 115,000

Soit un total de 438,000 personnes, mais il y en a aussi dans pratiquement tous les villages de la région qui disposaient au moins d’un local pouvant accueillir des familles.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

¬© Copyright 2013 ‚Äď 2014 photos by Roxane/EPOS ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†All rights reserved

Last modified on Friday, 17 October 2014 10:02
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