Possible Cholera Outbreak Threatens Yazidi and Christian Refugees in Iraq

Possible Cholera Outbreak Threatens Yazidi and Christian Refugees in Iraq

The Hammurabi Human Rights Organization, which monitors human rights in Iraq, released a report on the conditions of the people stranded in northern Iraq. Christians, Yazidis, and Muslims fled to the mountains after the Islamic State captured their towns. These people face horrible conditions, including the possibility of a cholera outbreak.

HHRO said the refugees are now in a “humanitarian crisis. Aid must be delivered immediately to prevent thousands of deaths.” The most important resource the refugees need is clean water. The organization reported that the people are using “unpurified, stagnant and dirty water.” The bacterium thrives in dirty water. Infected people suffer from severe diarrhea and vomiting, which leads to dehydration. Antibiotics and IVs can treat the cholera, but without the aid, a person can quickly die.

Iraqi General Ahmed Ithwany told Jonathan Krohn of The Telegraph that 70% of the Yazidis on Mount Sinjar are dead. Other officials told Krohn the American aid is useless “because it was dropped from 15,000 ft without parachutes and exploded on impact.” But when helicopters land to distribute the food, the refugees swarm the aircraft and attempt to climb in. People told Matthew Barber, a University of Chicago student, that they witnessed men falling to their deaths after they fell from the sides of the helicopters. 

The terrorist group implemented strict Sharia law after they expelled all the Christians from Mosul in July. Residents told HHRO they never observe an unaccompanied woman in public, as IS forced women to wear full-face veils.

“The conditions imposed on her clothes and grooming was only to end the pretext of debauchery resulting from grooming and overdressing,” said IS. “This is not a restriction on her freedom but to prevent her from falling into humiliation and vulgarity or to be a theatre for the eyes of those who are looking.”

“Anyone who is not committed to this duty and is motivated by glamour will be subject to accountability and severe punishment to protect society from harm and to maintain the necessities of religion and protect it from debauchery.”

IS forced shopkeepers to veil all mannequins since it is against Islamic law to showcase the human form. The order included male and female mannequins.

In the Nineveh Plain, HHRO said, “The number of women who have been kidnapped by ISIS is increasing on a daily basis.” The jihadists use other women to inspect the kidnapped girls and women “and select and isolate the beautiful ones to sell them or forcibly marry them to ISIS fighters.”


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