In a shocking revelation, it has emerged that in the week-long Islamic State offensive in Sinjar, which began last Sunday, the militants killed at least 500 Yazidis, according to Iraq's human rights minister.
Several residents, including children, were buried alive, while around 300 women have been kidnapped as slaves. The revelation was made by Iraq's human rights minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani.
In an interview to Reuters, al-Sudani alleged that the ISIS buried some of their victims alive, including women and children.
"We have striking evidence obtained from Yazidis fleeing Sinjar and some who escaped death, and also crime scene images that show indisputably that the gangs of the Islamic States have executed at least 500 Yazidis after seizing Sinjar," Sudani pointed out.
"Some of the victims, including women and children were buried alive in scattered mass graves in and around Sinjar," Sudani said.
Sinjar is home to a 4000-year-old minority sect known as Yazidis. Last week, the Islamic State militants had forced out the Kurdish forces guarding the region.
Islamic State, which considers the Yazidis as "devil worshipers" executed hundreds of residents since then, while an estimated 40,000 people fled to the Sinjar mountains.
Meanwhile, reports had emerged on Saturday that hundreds of Yazidi women have been captured by the ISIS militants and have been taken as sex slaves.
Ali, a Yazidi who fled to Lalish after Sinjar was taken over by Islamic State, told The Guardian that the group is taking Yazidi women as slaves.
On Wednesday, Arabic news sources had also reported that the more than 400 Yazidi women from Sinjar have been kidnapped by the militants.
"IS distributed the captured women to its fighters in the forests of Mosul and Tal Afar," reported a correspondent for Kuwaiti news channel Aladalah TV.