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Four years after genocide, thousands of Yazidis languish in Turkey

Displaced Yazidis who fled from IS' brutality to Turkey have been languishing in camps and tenements for years, hoping to reach the West. Their departure threatens the survival of one of the Middle East’s oldest religions.

UGURCA, Turkey — Survivors of the Islamic State (IS) attack on Iraq’s Yazidi community, who have taken refuge in southeast Turkey, marked the grim anniversary this month, praying at sunrise and sunset as they do each day in quiet remembrance of those lost in the 2014 genocide.

The refugees, living in a small cluster of tents in this village some 100 miles from their homeland, are among the few thousand Yazidis still in Turkey eight months after the Iraqi government declared victory over IS. Too terrified to return home, they are trapped in limbo as they seek asylum to begin their lives anew in the West. Remaining in Turkey is not an option, they say.

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