Video footage has surfaced that appears to show Yazidi girls being dragged from their families by masked and heavily-armed Islamic State (Isis) fighters. The footage, which takes place in an unknown apartment building presumably in Daesh-held land in either Syria or Iraq, shows a scrum of Yazidi prisoners and IS gunmen separating women from men. It is feared that the girls are being taken to be sold into sexual slavery by the terrorist group.
The apartment building is surrounded by IS fighters and the group's distinctive flag can be seen hanging from a balcony. There is no information about where or when the video was recorded.
IS seized thousands of Yazidi women and girls when it swept across northern Iraq in the middle of 2014. Although the city of Sinjar was recently re-taken by Kurdish forces, many of the inhabitants had already been sold into slavery in IS strongholds such as Raqqa and Mosul.
IBTimes UK revealed on Friday that the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) had paid ransoms to the group to help release some 2,500 Yazidi women and children, while families had raised funds from banks or wealthy donors to free their loved ones from captivity.
Last week, IBTimes UK also revealed the harrowing story of a Yazidi child soldier that had been recruited into the group's notorious Caliphate cubs division.
IS has massacred as many as 5,000 Yazidis in the towns and villages that it has seized and in Sinjat Kurdish forces uncovered a number of mass graves. Other Yazidis were forced to convert to Islam and those that have escaped or been released have told harrowing stories of torture.