This is a first in the world and a crucial verdict for the recognition of the abuses committed against the Yazidi minority by the Islamic State organization.

On Tuesday, November 30, German justice sentenced an Iraqi jihadist to life imprisonment for "genocide" of this Kurdish-speaking community. 

The judges of the High Regional Court of Frankfurt have found Taha al-Jumailly, 29, "guilty of genocide, crimes against humanity resulting in death, war crimes and complicity in war crimes" in particular.

The man, who had joined the ranks of the Islamic State organization in 2013, was on trial for having, during the summer of 2015, left to die of thirst a 5-year-old Yazidi girl whom he had "bought as a slave" with his mother, in Fallujah, Iraq, according to the prosecution.

For this package, his ex-wife Jennifer Wenisch, 30, has already been sentenced to ten years in prison in October for "crimes against humanity resulting in the death" of the child. 

"A historic day"

This verdict was eagerly awaited by the now decimated community.

"Today is a historic day for humanity. The genocide of the Yazidis is finally entering the history of international criminal law," Natia Navrouzov, lawyer and member of the NGO Yazda, which gathers the evidence, told AFP. crimes committed by the Islamic State organization against the Yazidis.

"We will ensure that more trials like this take place," she added.

The mother of the little girl told the bar the ordeal endured by her child, "attached to a window" outside the house in temperatures "up to 50 ° C", according to the parquet.

The accused intended to punish the girl, to whom he was inflicting ill-treatment, for having urinated on a mattress.

The illiterate mother who sometimes speaks confusedly in Kurmandji, one of the Kurdish languages, testified that she was repeatedly raped by IS jihadists after they invaded her village in the Sinjar Mountains, in northwestern Iraq in August 2014.

The Yazidi ethno-religious minority has been particularly persecuted by ISIS, which has reduced its women to sexual slavery and killed men by the hundreds.

The mother is represented by three lawyers, including the Lebanese-Briton Amal Clooney.

She is leading, with the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize winner, Nadia Murad, a former ISIS sex slave from the same village as the victim, of a campaign to have these crimes recognized as genocide. 

"Universal jurisdiction"

To try this Iraqi, arrested in Greece in 2019 on an international arrest warrant, Germany applies the principle of "universal jurisdiction" which allows a state to prosecute the perpetrators of the most serious offenses even when they have been committed outside the national territory.

This trial therefore sends "a clear message: no matter where the crimes were committed and no matter where the perpetrators are, thanks to universal jurisdiction, they cannot hide," insists Natia Navrouzov.

Germany, where a large Yazidi diaspora lives, is one of the few countries to have taken legal action against the abuses committed by ISIS against this minority. 

With this judgment, the German justice has already pronounced six convictions for crimes against humanity or complicity in crimes against humanity of men and women who had gone to the territories conquered by the IS, for acts in link with the Yazidis. 

In May, a UN special investigation team announced that it had gathered "clear and convincing evidence" that genocide was committed by the jihadists against the Yazidis.

Nadia Murad then asked the Security Council to seize the International Criminal Court or to create a specific tribunal for the "genocide" committed against her community.

With AFP

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