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Dutch to prosecute woman for Islamic State membership, Yazidi enslavement

Coffins with remains of Yazidis who were killed by Islamic State militants are seen during a funeral in Kojo, Iraq on February 6, 2021. [Credit: REUTERS/Charlotte Bruneau/File Photo]

THE HAGUE, Feb 10 (Reuters) - Prosecutors in the Netherlands on Friday announced they plan to put a Dutch woman who joined Islamic State on trial for crimes against humanity for enslaving a Yazidi woman in Syria in 2015.

The woman, identified by Dutch media as Hasna Aarab, will also be tried for membership of a terrorist organisation along with 11 other women who were repatriated to the Netherlands in November last year from camps for IS members in Syria.

It is the first time Dutch prosecutors have brought a case for crimes against humanity committed against Yazidis, an ancient religious minority who combine Zoroastrian, Christian, Manichean, Jewish and Muslim beliefs, the prosecution service said in a news release.

In neighbouring Germany, several former IS members have already been convicted for crimes, including genocide, against Yazidis.

IS, which views the Yazidis as devil worshippers, have killed more than 3,000 of them, enslaved 7,000 Yazidi women and girls and displaced most of the 550,000-strong community from its ancestral home in northern Iraq.

Under Dutch universal jurisdiction laws, national courts can try suspects for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide committed on foreign soil as long as the accused reside in the Netherlands.

A trial date has not yet been set.

Reporting by Stephanie van den Berg; Editing by Paul Simao


(c) 2023, Reuters


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