Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Nadia Murad Dedicates Nobel Peace Prize to Iraqis

Nadia Murad Dedicates Nobel Peace Prize to Iraqis

Thursday, 13 December, 2018 - 10:45
Photo released by the office of President Barham Salih during his meeting with Nadia Murad
Baghdad - Hamza Mustafa
Iraqi activist Nadia Murad, who received the Nobel Peace Prize for her advocacy on behalf of victims of wartime sexual violence, has called on the Iraqi government and the US-led coalition to search for Yazidi women who were kidnapped by ISIS in 2014.

Murad, 25, spoke in Baghdad after arriving from Stockholm.

"I'm very happy because three years ago I left Iraq physically and mentally exhausted. Today I've returned with a Nobel Peace Prize hoping it brings peace to Iraq," she said during a meeting with President Barham Salih.

Murad urged the Iraqi government and the US-led coalition to form a specialized team to search for Yazidis taken by ISIS to Syria.

Murad, a Yazidi, was among thousands of women and girls who were captured in Sinjar and forced into sexual slavery by ISIS militants in 2014. She became an activist on behalf of women and girls after escaping and finding refuge in Germany.

More than 80 percent of Yazidis are still living in displacement camps, she said.

"I'm wearing my Nobel Peace Prize in Baghdad to say to all Iraqis 'you are the most worthy of peace, so be peaceful to Iraq and to each other, and to the Yazidis and other Iraqi minorities who illustrate Iraq's rich cultural heritage'," she said.

Salih told Murad that "the rebuilding of Sinjar, delivering justice to the victims and examining the fate of the kidnapped are priorities".

"The time has come for the Iraqi parliament to pass a law considering the crime of Sinjar as a genocide against the Yazidis," he said.

In her Nobel speech on Monday, Murad urged world leaders to put an end to sexual violence, saying "the only prize in the world that can restore our dignity is justice and the prosecution of criminals."

She was jointly awarded the Nobel prize in Oslo with Congolese doctor Denis Mukwege.

Editor Picks