Islamic State survivors and Iraqi Yazidi activists Nadia Murad and Lamiya Aji Bashar received today Parliament’s Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought. The two women were honoured by Parliament for standing up for the persecuted Yazidi minority and the victims of sexual violence by Islamic State. “More than 3,500 children and women are still held hostage as slaves under Daesh. Every day they die a thousand times,” Aji Bashar said in her acceptance speech.
Lamiya Aji Bashar: “Daesh militants sold me over four times”
“I was sold four times by Daesh,” Aji Bashar told MEPs. In an emotional speech she narrated her ordeal at the hands of Islamic State and how she was seriously disfigured during her escape while her childhood friend and another girl died.
“Together with a friend of mine called Kathrin and a nine-year-old girl, all of us were raped,” she said. “The three of us did actually manage to escape but before we actually managed to arrive to safety, Kathrin accidentally walked over a landmine and it exploded and the last thing I heard was her death screams and it was the worst thing I have ever heard.”
Aji Bashar continued: “I believe I can be a voice to the victims. And the Sakharov Prize gives me great strength and this is why I have taken the decision to become a voice for the voiceless.” She added: “More than 3,500 children and women are still held hostage as slaves under Daesh. Every day they die a thousand times.” (source: EP)