For the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), both rape and women trafficking are not solely forms of crime but calculated tactics meant to explicitly show the militant group’s superiority and power over others. As a matter of fact, the militants are not just merely displaying their heinous crimes to the majority of the public; instead, they are boasting about it as well.
Thousands of Yazidi women have been taken by ISIS members over the past few weeks, and this abduction has already led to a massive number of deaths of young girls and women in Iraq. Females as young as ten years old have been abducted by ISIS members and after being kidnapped, they would be raped and sold at the slave markets the ISIS militants have created on their own to attract new recruits to their terror group.
Thankfully, some women, despite being gang raped by the members of the ISIS, have been able to flee their captors with the aid of some local residents in the area where the cruel militants have been keeping the 3,500 women they have abducted. It has been shared by escapees that those who spoke against the ISIS group were killed immediately and other women were constantly harassed by the IS fighters. According to some of the women who have been interviewed by Amnesty International, most of the abducted women wanted to kill themselves while they were held as captives by the militants but could not find a way to do so. One girl named Jilan, however, had managed to kill herself in the bathroom by cutting her wrists and hanging herself. Another story which was shared by the Yazidi women who were interviewed by Amnesty was the story of two sisters who tried to strangle each other in the hopes of killing one another so that they can escape their seemingly inevitable future of being ISIS sex slaves. Those whose families that have been able to pay the ransom set by the IS fighters have been freed while those who came from poor families remain captives by the terror group.
Because of the increasing rate of abduction in the IS-controlled areas in Iraq, early marriages have already become a trend because parents fear that their daughters will be forced by the terror group’s members to enter into marriage with ISIS militants. Females, both old and young, have no genuine freedom anymore because of the rise of the militant group. Furthermore, they are not the only ones being deprived by the Islamic terror group. Schools are also highly controlled by the ISIS when it comes to their curriculums. Academic syllabi have been changed completely and are now designed to teach Sharia law. If teachers will choose not to teach the said law, schools that have been shut down by the militant group will never again reopen.
According to the United Nations, around 5,000 men have already been executed and about 7,000 women have already been sold as sex slaves by ISIS fighters at present. Females who have been sold as sex slaves are usually brought back to the Islamic State’s location only to be sold again after they recover from the injuries and bruises they have acquired from the beatings they have received from the men who bought them.
Wood, P. (2014). Islamic State: Yazidi women tell of sex-slavery trauma. Retrieved from
Steinbuch, Y. (2014). Sister entered suicide pact rather than become ISIS sex slaves. Retrieved from