338 vulnerable Ezidis, who have been displaced by IS militants in Iraq's Sinjar, are housed in a tent city in southeastern Turkey
MARDIN - More than 300 Iraq's Ezidis, who fled to Turkey to escape attacks from Islamic State militants, given shelter Friday in a tent city in southeast of Turkey, Turkish aid agency said.
Ezidis fleeing the town of Sinjar and surrounding villages near Mosul city in Iraq's north started to arrive in the Midyat district of Turkey's southeastern province of Mardin last week.
Midyat district governor, Oguzhan Bingol, provincial chief of Turkish disaster emergency agency (AFAD), Davut Esen, and camp officials registered and placed 338 Ezidis into the tent city.
Talking about the tent city Esen said, "7,000 person capacity tent city is composed of two sections. One of them was for Arabs coming from Syria and other one was Assyrians from Syria. But the second side was empty, because the Assyrians did not come."
Esen said that the Turkish government ordered the empty part of the tent city to be made available for the Ezidis.
"For now, the tent city accommodates 338 Ezidis. Also, there are 500 Ezidis out of the camp. If they demand, they will be placed here and all of their needs will be met by the Turkish government."
In the face of an onslaught by Islamic State fighters (IS), thousands of Ezidis fled their homes and sought shelter in the Sinjar mountains. According to Iraq’s human rights minister, Mohammed Shia al-Sudani, IS killed hundreds of Ezidis and buried some alive, including women and children.
As well as those massacred by the IS, many died of thirst and starvation before a rescue operation was launched.
Sinjar is the traditional home of the Ezidi, an eclectic religious sect fusing Zoroastrian, Manichaean, Jewish, Nestorian Christian and Islamic elements. Orthodox Islamic scholars regard them as heretical.
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