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Yazidis 'Massacred' After U.S. Says Conditions 'Improved'

Iraqi officials say ISIS militants have executed at least 80 men and kidnapped scores of women and children in the northern Iraqi village of Kocho.

Yazidis 'Massacred' After U.S. Says Conditions 'Improved'
The New York Times / Adam Ferguson

Not long after after this statement from The White House: "The situation on the mountain has greatly improved …We do not expect an additional operation to evacuate people off the mountain, and it is unlikely to need more humanitarian airdrops there.”

Yazidi activists say extremist fighters from the group ISIS killed at least 80 men and kidnapped hundreds of women and children in the Iraqi village of Kocho. (Video via  Euronews)

Details surrounding this latest attack are slim but according to the BBC: “The villagers were assembled at Kocho's only school, after which the men were shot, the activists said. Remaining villagers were then put on buses for an unknown destination.”

There are also unconfirmed reports that ISIS had offered the villagers an ultimatum — convert to Islam or be executed. The Yazidis practice an ancient religion ISIS regards as satanic. (Video via BBC

Earlier this week, the Obama administration said conditions for those stranded on Sinjar Mountain had improved, thanks in part to humanitarian airdrops of food and water. 

But the crisis is far from over, says a United Nations spokesperson, who told The New York Times: “Although many people managed to escape from the north side, there are still thousands of others up there, under conditions of extreme heat, dehydration and imminent threat of attack. The situation is far from solved.” 

​So far, ISIS — which now goes by the name the Islamic State — is responsible for killing an estimated 500 members of the Kurdish-speaking ethnic group. Some 300,000 more have been displaced. (Video via ​ABN)

A correspondent for The Telegraph describes their dire situation this way:  

“There is no other way to put this: the thousands of people left on this mountainside are covered in goat droppings and have no water to drink, let alone to wash it off.”

 

​U.S. Central Command said on Friday its drones destroyed two of ISIS’s armed vehicles in response to this latest massacre. There are also unconfirmed reports U.S. aircraft struck ISIS positions near the Mosul dam.

This video includes image from Getty Images.