Amerli: Iraqi town besieged by ISIS starving to death

BBC News reports: With each new dawn, the people of Amerli wake up to the same nightmare.

Surrounded by towns and villages taken by the Sunni jihadist militants of Islamic State (IS), the residents of this small Shia Turkmen community about 180km (110 miles) north of Baghdad have been living under siege for two months.

There is no electricity, little medicine and food supplies are dwindling. Unlike recent US intervention to help save members of the Yazidi religious minority trapped on Mount Sinjar in north-western Iraq, there is no dramatic plan to rescue people here.

In the eyes of those in Amerli, the world has turned its back on them.

“After the attack of Mosul, all the Shia Turkmen villages around Amerli were captured by Islamic State,” explains Dr Ali Albayati, a local resident. “They killed the people and displayed their bodies outside the village.”

The majority of the residents of Amerli are part of the Turkmen ethnic group, who make up roughly 4% of Iraq’s population. As Shia, they are directly targeted by Islamic State, who consider them apostates.

“We have been trying to fight them off for 70 days,” says Dr Albayati. “We have no electricity, no drinking water.” [Continue reading…]

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