On Friday, seven college aged Iraqi Christian women hid in their church-run dorm room for seven hours to escape the dark eyes of ISIS, who broke into their space where they eat, pray and study in Kirkuk, a Kurdish town outside of Mosul, which is now on the terrorists “hit” list.
They stayed quiet and prayed as militants roamed about their dorm, even bringing a wounded fighter into one of the bedrooms.
Their personal sprint to safety in concealed locations throughout their tiny wood floored room, was spearheaded around 4 a.m. local time after the young women heard gun fire and what sounded like an explosion.
— CNN International (@cnni) October 27, 2016
As of now, ISIS is in a bitter battle to keep Mosul and its surroundings in their control, an area that has been categorized as the terrorist group’s last “stronghold” in the predominantly Arab nation.
— Gordyean (@Kurd_Tarihcisi) October 21, 2016
Since the militants first came to power over Mosul in 2014, news sources have reported a series of human rights abuses, widespread sexual assault, destruction of national monuments and attacks on religious minorities like Christians.
The lot of young faithful women who were once enrolled at University to pursue a higher education but were forced to disown it, when ISIS captured the norther city and their school, where the extremist burned books and demanded a curriculum change, specifically that related to Islam.
Now in front of the world, ISIS is doing what it can, in the worst way possible, to keep hold of Mosul, the last major city in Iraq under their control.
Monaly Najeeb, a girl that’s one of the seven that hid from ISIS told CNN via translator the religious persecution and fear that they have been living in, including the loss of their ancestral homes in Qaraqosh, a city that was once considered Iraq’s largest Christian city.
To save their life the first time, they fled, but earlier this month, when ISIS broke in to their home, the women stayed and covered up in blankets to protect themselves from bullets and slid underneath “flimsy wooden cots” because they knew the militants had come in to their safe space.
Najeeb said, all of them could hear the terrorists voices in the kitchen, a location that was steps away from their room.
As Najeeb continues, she explains that in her room, she shared with others, the men would eat on their beds, ruffle through their clothes and even brought in a blood bathed militant to lay down on one of their beds. All of which, caused a paralyzing level of fear and worry that they would become the next victim by being killed or raped.
Via translator, Najeeb said, she continued in prayer and held tightly onto her glass rosary. As well as reached out to her Erbil based Christian priest, Father Roni Momika, stating, “Father help us.”
In response to the plight of the girls, he said via text, “Pray to the Virgin Mary”… “She will protect you.”
As time went on, all the phones died except for one, which is where the group of seven received instructions from Iraqi police and they took them, even when their was still a member of ISIS in their bathroom.
Najeeb led the other women out of their cots and ran through the back door towards a tall wall, 8-feet to be exact. They each climbed over it with the help a chair that sat at the bottom of it.
Thankfully, they all were able to escape.
As she reflected, the young lady stated, “I don’t know how we stayed alive.”
(H/T CNN International)