Since the beginning of the operation to liberate Mosul 6,000 Shabaks have been forced to flee towns and villages around Mosul.
The refugees are residing in a tent camp called Hazyr on the road between Mosul and Erbil. Razi Behcet told Sputnik Turkey that in Iraq and Iraqi Kurdistan there are about 750,000 Shabaks.
“Among them there are Shiites and there are Sunnis as well. A significant number of Shabaks live in Sulaimaniya, Sinjar, Erbil, Baghdad and Mosul. However, most of them live in Mosul, where there are about 85 villages,” Behcet said.
After the militants of Daesh seized Mosul, a significant number of Shabaks were forced to flee the city because they were persecuted by Daesh due to their Shiite beliefs.
“They took refuge in Baghdad and Erbil. However, there were those who could not leave their homes in Mosul. Shabaks Shiites suffered particularly severe persecution by the jihadists. Their homes were burned down; women and children were subjected to humiliating torture,” Behcet said.
He further said that thousands of Shabaks were killed in the massacre at the hands of Daesh.
“In the Iraqi Army and the Peshmerga forces there is a separate unit consisting of Shabaks. Currently, the fighters of these forces are taking part in the operation to liberate Mosul,” he concluded.