ISIS and Sex Slavery
Moving from Condemnation to Action
I visited The United States Institute of Peace (USIP) on Wednesday October 5th 2016 from 2:00p.m to 4:30p.m. The Event started by welcoming remarks by Ambassador William B. Taylor The executive President of the USIP and Mrs. Cindy Hensley McCain Chair of the McCain Institute’s Human Trafficking Advisory Council. After That Ms. Zainab Hawa Bangura The US special Representative of the secretary-General on sexual Violence In Conflict gave her speech on Sexual Violence and the way it is seen through some cultures and societies. Some of the remarkable things she states in her speech that when we think of terrorism we don’t think of sexual violence and that it has become an ideologist activity. She also talks about the survivors of Isis and the treatment they get after the trauma they experience such as, psychosocial and medical support because those women face problems within their societies and families, they are seen as a shame rather than victims when they are in the most need of being welcomed and accepted which she mention is the leaders job to change that mind set. After the speech there was a discussion lead by Ms. Elise Labott (moderator) Global Affairs Correspondent at CNN, Mr. Sarhang Hamasaeed Senior Program Officer for Middle East Programs at USIP, Ambassador Mark P. Lagon Distinguished Senior Scholar and Centennial Fellow at the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown, and Ms. Zainab. They discuss Sex trafficking and Violence against women by Isis is one of the things we don’t hear about as we hear about other things. Mr. Hamasaeed talks about sexual Violence in Middle East and Yazidi women (women who escaped ISIS) the issue is not about sex or money but power, control, and destruction. He explains the Religion and how it’s used by ISIS but its not an actual reason, he states that one way to deal with that issue is to take this mindset and deal with it. They discuss those women and how they are treated as slaves/property not even seen as women, owners buy and sell them in market places sometimes a women is sold for 21 times trying not to get them pregnant or else they would lose their value in the market and mentioning the excessive drinking to the point they start loosing some of their memory. Yazidi women are not only the victims of ISIS sex violence, there are others however we don’t hear about them more frequently because their community accepts them. Yet Yazidi’s is a very small and traditional community and sometimes-high level of shame would result in those women committing suicide. Finally, They mention that ISIS is very systematic and fighting force from all aspects. At the end of the discussion they give the audience the opportunity to ask questions answered by the guests who were mentioned earlier.