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Wives of ISIS militants were complicit in rape of Yazidi sex slaves, former captive reveals

(Reuters/Umit Bektas)Yazidi refugees stand behind fences at a Syrian and Iraqi refugee camp in the southern Turkish town of Midyat in Mardin province, Turkey, June 20, 2015.

A Yazidi woman who was sold as a sex slave to several Islamic State fighters has detailed how she was mistreated by the wives of her captors.

In an article published by AlterNet, Seeham Haji Khudayda shared how she was raped almost daily by her captors and how the wives of the militants were complicit in the abuses she endured.

Seeham Haji Khudayda was only 19 when he was captured by ISIS in August 2014, when the group invaded northern Sinjar town of Hardan, in Iraq.

Her husband, along with other men, were murdered by the militants that day, while the women were hauled away in buses and driven to a holding area in Tal Afar.

During her captivity, Khudayda tried desperately to make herself look unattractive as possible to avoid being sold as a sex slave. She would pretend to breastfeed her 4-month-old daughter in front of ISIS fighters to remind them that she was married because militants placed a higher value on unmarried girls.

Her attempts to repel the militants worked for about six months, but she was eventually sold to a man called Abu Anas.

When she pleaded with her captor not to rape her, the man told her that she must either convert to Islam or be killed.

"I said, please kill me, don't rape me, I love my husband. He said it's not your decision. This is halal. In the Koran, it's mentioned that you can take the women of other religions as sex slaves. This is our right, we are not doing anything wrong, it's according to Islamic law. You are kuffar [an unbeliever], you deserve this," she recalled.

On several occasions, Khudayda's captor would let his two guards rape her, usually as punishment for resisting him.

Khudayda was eventually sold to a Lebanese man called Abu Qutada, who had a Syrian wife from Raqqa. She noted that Qutada treated her bad, but the wife treated her even worse.

"She forced me to shave my body. She brought me sexy clothes to wear for her husband and helped him rape me by tying me to the bed. She used very tough, cheap and bad words with me," she recounted.

On top of helping Abu Qutada rape the Yazidi captive, the wife forced Khudayda to clean their four-story house from top to bottom daily, and neighbors would often come over to join the wife in taunting her as she cleaned.

She recalled a time when she was prohibited from seeing her crying daughter because she was cleaning the house from the fourth to the first floor.

"The whole time I could hear my daughter crying. This was heartbreaking because my daughter was so hungry. She wouldn't allow me to give her milk," she said.

Khudayda was returned to Anas after she threatened to throw herself off the balcony and she was sold to five other militants after that. She was able to escape from her last captor when she tricked him into believing that she wanted to embrace Islam and marry him.

She slowly gained her captor's trust and she was eventually allowed to contact her family in Dohuk over the phone to inform them that she was still alive. She secretly kept in touch with the family, who then arranged for a man to smuggle her out of Mosul.

Khudayda, now 22, is currently safe with her family in a displaced persons camp in Dohuk, but she is still haunted in her sleep by terrifying visions of the men and women who tormented her.

Other former wives and widows of extremists have also arranged for smugglers to help them flee from Iraq and Syria as the terror group started to lose ground in the region.

Some of the former wives have complained that the militants were obsessed with sex and that they were kept in all-female dormitories where women would fight among themselves.

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