Home > Conflict & Security, Middle East, Politics > Desperate Search for Survivors Among Yazidi Homes Destroyed by Bombers

Desperate Search for Survivors Among Yazidi Homes Destroyed by Bombers

Patrick Cockburn writes in The Independent:

Rescuers tore with their bare hands at the wreckage of mud-brick houses in the Sinjar district of northern Iraq yesterday where five vehicle-born bombs have killed at least 200 people and injured 300. The casualties may rise to make the atrocity the worst single bombing of a civilian target in Iraq in the past four years. All the victims were Yazidis, members of a pre-Islamic sect, many of whom live in this part of northern Iraq.

“We are digging with our hands and shovels because we can’t use cranes because many of the houses were built of clay,” said Dakhil Kassim, mayor of the nearby town of Sinjar. “We are expecting to reach the final death toll tomorrow or the day after tomorrow as we are getting only pieces of bodies.”

The loss of life is so high because the Yazidis are poor and live packed together in houses constructed of mud brick. These provide no protection against the force of a bomb blast. The most likely perpetrators are Sunni Arab Jihadi insurgents who see all those who do not belong to their own brand of Islam as deserving death.

The Islamic State of Iraq, an al-Qa’ida in Iraq umbrella organisation, distributed leaflets a week ago warning residents in the area that there was going to be an attack because Yazidis were “anti-Islamic”.

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