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Thursday, 15 October 2020 17:29

Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General visits family of late Yazidi spiritual leader

Sheikhan, 14 October 2020 - The Deputy Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq and the Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator in Iraq, Ms. Irena Vojáčková-Sollorano, visited the family of the late Yazidi spiritual leader, Baba Sheikh Khurto Hajji Ismael. She furthermore visited his grave in Bozan, Sheikhan district, to pay her respects.

The Deputy Special Representative emphasized during her visit the need for justice, while recognizing the atrocities committed against all innocent civilians and assuring accountability, reconciliation, reparation, and healing.

She stressed that the United Nations is exerting all efforts to support the Government of Iraq to provide for the security and humanitarian needs of persons displaced by the armed conflict and to ensure that IDPs can return to their places of origin or find new homes in full compliance with international humanitarian principles including complete personal documentation, return of all properties, access to education, social and medical services, and participation in local decision making.

Speaking during her visit to the late spiritual leader’s family, Ms. Vojáčková-Sollorano said “With great sadness and sorrow, we received the news of his holiness Baba Sheikh’s passing. On behalf of the UN family, we express our deepest and sincere condolences to his family and loved ones, Yazidi community as well as all Iraqis. He was a remarkable spiritual leader for all Yazidi in Iraq and across the world and a great man of peace. While we extend our sympathies on his passing, we must also pay tribute to his role in the assistance to survivors of the crimes targeting the Yazidi population and salute his steadfast devotion to his leadership position and to all Yazidis.”

“His teachings of forgiveness, tolerance and co-existence are crucial to the recovery of the Yazidi community, especially women and girls. He will be always remembered for his tireless efforts to heal the wounds of his community and we trust that his successor will continue on the path of compassionate leadership,” she said, adding “the UN stand in solidarity and ready to continue to provide support and assistance to all ethnic and religious communities including the Yazidi community, especially in providing support to the voluntary return of Yazidi displaced families to their places of origin in Sinjar and its surroundings”.

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