Displaced Iraqis from the Yazidi community settle at the camp of Bajid Kandala at Feeshkhabour town near the Syria-Iraq border, in Iraq Saturday, Aug. 9, 2014. (AP/Khalid Mohammed)
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Islamic State militants have killed at least 500 members of Iraq's Yazidi ethnic minority during their offensive in the north, Iraq's human rights minister told Reuters Sunday.Mohammad Shia al-Sudani said the Sunni militants had also buried alive some of their victims, including women and children. Sinjar is the ancient home of the Yazidis, one of the towns captured by the Sunni militants who view the community as "devil worshipers" and tell them to convert to Islam or face death.The Islamic State, which has declared a caliphate in parts of Iraq and Syria, has prompted tens of thousands of Yazidis and Christians to flee for their lives during their push to within a 30-minute drive of the Kurdish regional capital Irbil.Earlier in their push through northern Iraq, Islamic State, which also considers all Shiites heretics who must repent or die, boasted of killing hundreds of captive Shiite soldiers after capturing the city of Tikrit on June 12 . Tens of thousands of Yazidis fled for their lives after Kurdish fighters abandoned them in the face of Islamic State militants, and are trapped on a mountain near Sinjar at risk of starvation.
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