A six-year-old Yezidi child was killed when a fire broke out at a camp near Sheikhan in the Kurdistan Region’s Duhok province.
The victim died in the Essian camp between Ba’adre and Sheikhan in Duhok province.
“A six-year-old Yezidi girl died in her tent yesterday. The girl was meanwhile on her mattress in a deep sleep. But now she is the victim of the fire that started in her tent,” German-based Yezidi activist Zidan Ismail told Kurdistan 24.
“This tent was not the first or the last one, but much more has happened in the past seven years, and many people who faced the genocide have been victims in IDP (internally displaced person) camps for a good eight years,” Ismail added.
“The Yezidis have so far been ignored by everyone, and there is still no humanitarian aid for them.”
Hundreds of thousands of Yezidis remain displaced in the Kurdistan Region despite the liberation of Sinjar from ISIS in November 2015.
Fires are common in displacement camps in the Kurdistan Region, both from heaters and poor electrical systems. Several displaced Yezidi civilians have died in recent years, and hundreds of tents burned.
In June, 400 tents burned down and multiple residents were injured when a fire broke out in the Sharya camp, which hosts Yezidis in Duhok province. In response, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) built semi-permanent shelters made of cement blocks to reduce the risk of such deadly fires breaking out again.
In February, three people also died in a fire at another camp in Duhok.
The fight against IS destroyed up to 80 percent of Shingal, a predominantly Yezidi city in Nineveh province, not far from the Syrian border.
There is still a lack of services and jobs in Sinjar.
Furthermore, in mid-October 2020, the federal government announced a plan to close displacement camps across the country.
The KRG said camps in the Kurdistan Region would remain in operation for as long as they were needed. However, it said it required increased international funding to do so.
The necessities for many residents of these camps are provided by the UN, various international organizations, and Iraq’s federal government. Still, most of the costs are covered by the KRG.
Iraq has not contributed enough to the displaced person and refugee camps. Despite this, the KRG has continued supporting these facilities.