By:Karen E. Smith

Genocide is one of the most heinous abuses of human rights �imaginable,
yet reaction to it by European governments in the post-Cold War world
has been criticised for not matching the severity of the crime. European
governments rarely agree on whether to call a situation genocide, and their
responses to purported genocides have often been limited to delivering
humanitarian aid to victims and supporting prosecution of perpetrators
in international criminal tribunals. More coercive measures€– including
sanctions or military intervention€– are usually rejected as infeasible or
unnecessary. This book explores the European approach to genocide,
reviewing government attitudes towards the negotiation and ratification
of the 1948 Genocide Convention and analysing responses to purported
genocides since the end of the Second World War. Karen E. Smith
�considers why some European governments were hostile to the Genocide
Convention and why European governments have been �reluctant to use
the term genocide to describe atrocities ever since.
karen e. smith is Reader in International Relations at the London

Over the past three months, Yazda has been conducting a genocide documentation project to gather evidence and survivor testimonies regarding the crimes of genocide committed against the Yazidis. A significant part of our focus has turned to the mass graves which are now accessible for documentation and analysis.

We are pleased to issue our new report today, on the mass graves of Yazidis that we have been able to investigate. We estimate at least 35 mass grave sites in total; of these, Yazda has been able to verify 19 of them through the examination of physical evidence and corroboration of survivor testimonies. Three others have been confirmed by other parties, and probably at least 10 remain inside IS-controlled territory. Three others require additional investigation but are likely mass grave sites.

Now that the mass graves of Yazidi civilians massacred by IS are accessible, we hope that this report can help re-energize the conversation surrounding the recognition of these crimes as genocide, and shine a light on the need for the international community to intervene on behalf of the Yazidi people in order that they might rebuild their lives and reclaim their homeland.

Source Organization Yazda

"At Crossroads: Human Rights Violations Against Iraqi Minorities After ISIS" is a fourpart
report on violations of the human rights of minority individuals in Iraq, collaboratively
produced by Heartland Alliance International (HAI) and Masarat Foundation for Cultural
and Media Development (Masarat). Minority persons’ rights have suffered infringement
and abuse for decades in Iraq but recent social turmoil and national instability, caused
in large part by the rise of Islamic State In Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in 2014, have proven an
equally fertile ground for mistreatment. Little human rights reporting has been dedicated
to this most contemporary era of minority rights in the country.

 History under the Sword : Tracking Cultural Heritage Destruction, Human Migration, and the Dynamic Nature of Conflict in Iraq, Exploratory Seminar at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study , Thursday and Friday, July 9-10, 2015
Saad Salloum
Political Sciences College, AL- Mustansiriya University.