Jiyan Foundation Statement Commemorating the International Day of Remembrance of and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism
NEW YORK — Jiyan Foundation for Human Rights Co-Head of Trauma Care and Health Asmaa Ibrahim, MSc, issue the following statement ahead of the fourth commemoration of the International Day of Remembrance of and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism on August 21, 2021:
“The International Day of Remembrance of and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism is a time to consider and commit to supporting the mental health of the survivors of atrocities. This is a very personal issue for me because my family are among the survivors.
“From family who survived the Anfal campaigns of 1988 order by Sadam Hussain against the Kurds, to the thousands of Yazidi women and children who escaped from ISIS captivity, the communities in Kurdistan, Iraq, and Syria have been severely traumatized by the endemic conflict that afflicts our region. We have endured decades of genocide, rape, torture, forced religious conversion, and loss of thousands of loved ones to terror and intolerance.
“Conflict quickly escalates when there’s a lack of mental health care and community dialogue. Intolerance and hate breed in the absence of mental and medical health care, political stability, and economic support. Our communities desperately need immediate and on-going investment in medical, mental, and physical health care, investments in infrastructure, and peacebuilding resources for government and nongovernment agencies.
“The recent events in Afghanistan demonstrates that it’s crucial that the U.S. and its allies not abandon us to groups seeking to destabilize our fragile democracy. A lack of support will leave room for more violence in the future. Kurdistan and Iraq need permanent programs that will not only support a militarily stable Iraq, but also the physical and mental well-being of its citizens. We are confident that the U.S. can lead in this endeavor.”