Nadia Murad accepted the Nobel Peace Prize this Monday in Oslo, urging the world to help free the hundreds of Yazidi women and girls still being held by ISIS militants.
Murad survived sex slavery at the hands of ISIS fighters in Iraq and has since become a leading voice for the Yazidi people.
The 25-year-old shared this year’s Nobel Peace Prize with Dr. Denis Mukwege, a Congolese doctor who has spent more than two decades treating women who have been raped or sexually abused in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s war-torn east.
Nobel committee chairman Berit Reiss-Andersen called the pair “two of the strongest voices in the world today”.
The Straits Times reports:
“The protection of the Yazidis and all vulnerable communities around the world is the responsibility of the international community,” Ms Murad told the ceremony in Oslo.
Ms Murad wept during Ms Reiss-Andersen’s description of the suffering of her people.
She survived the horrors of captivity under the ISIS where they targeted Ms Murad’s Kurdish-speaking community.
Older women and men faced summary execution during the ISIS assault, which the United Nations has described as a possible genocide. Captured in 2014, she suffered forced marriage, beatings and gang-rape before she was able to escape.
Despite growing concern about the oppression of the Yazidi people, the fate of some 3,000 Yazidi women and girls is still unknown.
“Young girls at the prime of life are sold, bought, held captive and raped every day,” said Murad.
“It is inconceivable that the conscience of the leaders of 195 countries around the world is not mobilised to liberate these girls.”