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Iraq

Yezidi students in Mosul scared to live in university dormitories

By Associated Press 12/1/2019
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Yezidi women studying at the University of Mosul are afraid of staying in dormitories inside the city.

They say they fear for their security and face harassment there.

Young women eager for an education, these Yezidis are students at Mosul University.

They gather outside their accommodation to chat, and inside prepare meals together before they get down to studying.

But these dormitories are not on the university campus - in fact, they're not even in Mosul.

The women are renting this private home in Bashiqa because they are too scared to live in the rooms provided by the university.

They claim they face harassment.

"Their terror has not ended, and we're afraid. In fact, once we enter the college, we never leave it to go anywhere until the end of the college day," says student Nahida Aido.

"It is absolutely impossible for us to go out to the markets or shops in Mosul, we don't dare."

Many Yezidi women believe accommodation outside Mosul is safer, in towns with mixed populations of Christians, Yezidis, Turkmens, and small Arab minorities.

Bashiqa is 32 kilometres east of the city of Mosul, so that means a much longer journey to get to class.

But these women feel it's a price worth paying for their peace of mind.

Many of these Yezidi students are originally from Sinjar. But they fled to camps in Duhok when the Islamic State overran their hometown.

The militants killed and kidnapped Yezidis. And the trauma of that onslaught still lives with the women.

"The coming of Daesh (Islamic State) to Sinjar, the kidnappings of the Yezidi girls and taking them away to Mosul and also because of the security situation means we can't stay inside the dorms in Mosul," says student Fahima Tawal.

"But we do attend the university in Mosul. There is still fear in our hearts, and the shock is still there. It is with us and we haven't recovered from it yet."

There are more than 400 Yezidi women studying in the different colleges and departments of the University of Mosul.

But many of them have lost years of their study when the colleges were destroyed by the Islamic State militants during their control of the city.

Now the militants have been driven out, education can resume.

Anas al Taii, a local non-governmental organisation representative, accepts that the women are being harassed at university, but he insists Mosul is overall a good place to live.

"Mosul city and its people as a whole are known for their respect of the Yezidi ethnicity," he says.

A kerosene delivery arrives at the women's house.

Supervised by security personnel, it's a sign why the young students feel safer in this town.

Comments

 
John Bird | 13/1/2019
These Yazidi women are renting private rooms or homes outside Mosul in towns where Arabs are a minority. There is genuine safety and less chance of terror wherever Arabs are a minority.
pdk.-puk traitors | 13/1/2019
mosul was under TOTAL CONTROL of kurds for bearly 10 years, these two moron traitor parties lost it to arabs.

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