Nadia Murad Speaks at the United Nations on Sexual Violence in Conflict
Nadia Murad has dedicated her life to fighting against the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war.
“After five years since the genocide against my people, as the world stood and watched, no clear steps have been taken to save the surviving Yazidis.” - Nadia Murad
Sexual violence crimes committed against women across the world have become “a dangerous phenomenon” that requires action by all, Nadia Murad, UN Office on Drugs and Crime Goodwill Ambassador for the Dignity of Survivors of Human Trafficking, told the UN Security Council. Ms. Murad is a Yazidi woman whose village was brutally attacked in 2014 by Daesh. She and many other women were taken prisoner to be sexually trafficked. Ms. Murad managed to escape and now pushes the UN and the wider world to recognize the ongoing enslavement of the Yazidi people and the need to persecute Daesh criminals.
“We need courts that will bring perpetrators like ISIS to accountability through a fair trial. When we speak of accountability, we must speak of justice for survivors. Perpetrators must be prosecuted for their crimes as part of a complete truth and reconciliation process – even if those perpetrators are state actors,“ said Ms. Murad in a recent interview with the United Nations.
Ms. Murad founded Nadia’s Initiative in 2016 to rebuild communities in crisis and advocate for victimes of sexual violence. Through its two initiatives, Sinjar Action Fund (SAF) and Survivors Action Response (SAR), Nadia’s Initiative challenges world leaders to act – to make “never again” a reality, not an empty promise. Nadia’s Initiative also worked extensively to pressure the United Nation’s Security Council to pass Resolution 2379 which opened an investigation into the war crimes committed by Daesh against the Yazidi people.
Filmmaker Alexandria Bombach follows twenty-three year old Nadia Murad in “On Her Shoulders”, a Sundance Film Festival winning documentary. From giving testimony before the U.N. to visiting refugee camps to soul-bearing media interviews and one-on-one meetings with top government officials, Nadia is a relentless beacon of hope for her people. Find screenings here.