Farida, Ezidi Survivor: I am stronger than Daesh

Farida Khalaf, an Ezidi Survivor

Karwan Beadri- Shekhan

When she won the third award, Farida once more stated, “I am stronger than Daesh.” She is among the women that want to prove her .statement by actions. Now, she works to deliver the voice of oppressed women to the world

Farida Khalaf, 24, is an Islamic State group (IS) survivor. As a woman who represents Ezidi survivors who seek justice, she received the 2020 Annual Human Rights Judith Lee Stronach Award, for which she was chosen by the Center for Justice and Accountability (CJA).

This is the third award given to Farida since the start of her advocacy for the rights of the Ezidi women and victims of IS in 2015.

Who is Farida?

Farida Abbas Khalaf, an Ezidi survivor, fled IS in 2015 after a year of rape, torture, and enslavement. She stayed in an Internally Displaced Person (IDP) camp and moved to Germany with the help of the German government to receive treatments.


Lamya Haji Bashar, Nadia Murad, Farida Khalaf, three Ezidi women survivors. 

After immigrating to Germany, she began addressing the oppression of the Ezidis and the crimes of Daesh. “Whenever I was at any place or a conference, I was thinking of how to deliver the misery and violence committed against Humanity and especially the Ezidis to the world,” she said, “I did not want to merely be my voice, I wanted to be the voice of more than two thousand Ezidi women.”

She, along thousands of Ezidis, was taken captive by IS on August 3, 2014, in Kocho village in Sinjar. Daesh shot her father and oldest brother to death.

“Back then, we had a simple and normal life. I was happy and had big dreams. I wanted to be a teacher and serve my village, but IS reversed my life hundred percent.”

She, with 47 other Ezidi women, was taken to Raqqa, Syria, the so-called capital of the Islamic State. She was sold several times among the IS members. She said that she attempted to commit suicide four times.

“I am stronger than Daesh.”

Farida got married in Germany. She says she is happy that her relations with the Ezidis are great and sees all Ezidis as her relatives.

She is also the winner of the 2017 Catalan Liberepress Association award, which is about the fields of human rights, culture, media and environment protection in Europe and the world. (SPS)


Farida Khalaf 

In the same year, she and Nadia Murad, Noble Peace Prize winner, were gifted a humanitarian award by the Polish Foreign Ministry.

“I am still stronger than Daesh and have not given up. I decided to be the voice of oppressed Ezidis and deliver their voice to the world.”

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