After another series of airstrikes conducted by the U.S. Military against ISIS targets, 20,000 Iraqis that had been trapped on mount Sinjar were brought to the Syrian-Iraqi border.
According to the Iraqi Ministry of Human Rights, the thousands of stranded Yazidis were brought to trucks which drove them to the Syrian border after Kurdish forces broke the siege and could come to their aid. Currently, the Yazidis are in Dohuk, a region located in Iraq, in the northern Kurdish region.
Kamil Amin, spokesman for the Ministry of Human Rights, told CNN that the refugees found shelter with help from the Kurdish government.
Yazidis belong to an ancient monotheistic religious minority that draws its roots from Christianity, Judaism and Zoroastrianism. As such, they are a target of ISIS, which also calls itself the Islamic State.
Before the U.S.-Kurdish offensive near mount Sinjar, there were 50,000-60,000 Yazidis stranded on the mountain. Kurdish forces could also recapture two towns that had been under ISIS control since Wednesday, when the militant group had marched towards Irbil.
During Sunday’s offensive, Kurdish forces won some fronts while losing ground on other fronts.
The strategically important town of Jalawla was overtaken by ISIS after Kurdish fighters lost control of the city. After the fighting began on Sunday morning for control over the town, Kurdish fighters were finally forced to withdraw from Jalawla.
On Sunday, the U.S. State Department declared that it had relocated some of its staff from the U.S. Consulate in Irbil. This information came after the travel warning that the State Department had issued, explaining that the American Embassy has extremely limited possibilities of helping U.S. citizens who face difficulties (including arrest).
Sunday was also marked by repeated airstrikes in which the U.S. struck five targets that included a mortar positions and armed vehicles.
ISIS claims to have created a caliphate in Syria and Iraq, where they have been carrying out slaughters. IS militants are renowned for their brutality. For instance, in Syria, they placed the heads of some of their victims on poles. In video recordings, they force a man on his knees and instruct him at gunpoint to convert to Islam before they behead him.
Amin also declared on Sunday that the Ministry had reports of 500 Yazidis being killed (and that they also had reason to believe that some could have been buried alive.)
On the other hand, on Saturday, U.S. airstrikes resulted in the death of 61 ISIS fighters and injured 60 more on Friday.
The entire Obama administration isn’t confident that this situation will be solved in the near future.