The Free Yezidi Foundation is designed to assist Yezidis in need. The Foundation was established shortly after terrorists attempted to eradicate the Yezidi people in August 2014. The Free Yezidi Foundation seeks to implement projects to protect and support the most vulnerable members of the Yezidi community.
- The Free Yezidi Foundation is a politically independent, non-profit organisation
- The Free Yezidi Foundation is an officially registered charity in the Netherlands and is designed to operate in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq
- The Free Yezidi Foundation will operate under the guidance of a Supervisory Board and will be led by an Executive Director
- The Free Yezidi Foundation operates under the following guiding principles:
Areas of Primary Focus
- Child Protection
- Support for victims of gender-based violence
- Support for minority communities
- Recognition of crimes against humanity and acts of genocide
- General civil society organisation support for minority communities
After the ISIS attacks on Sinjar and the Yezidi population in August 2014, Ms Ibrahim founded the Free Yezidi Foundation to help Yezidi civilians in need and raise awareness of the situation. On behalf of the Foundation, she has spoken at the United Nations Security Council, the British Parliament, and a number of prominent universities and think tanks in the United States and elsewhere. Pari has also been active in organising protests and speaking with the media, including Al-Monitor, the BBC, and the Dutch news show Brandpunt. After the first fact-finding missions to meet with survivors, Ms Ibrahim understood that the Foundation would be most effective by providing services and assistance to survivors in the IDP camps. She has spearheaded FYF efforts to establish women's and children's centers in one such camp, leads the FYF justice project, and conducts general advocacy to promote greater humanitarian and human rights support to Yezidi civilians.
Ms Ibrahim studied at the University of Amsterdam. She speaks Kurdish (Kurmanji), Dutch, English, and German.
A development economist by training, Mr Carriere has focused on the development and scaling up of programmes of malnutrition control, selective primary health care, maternal mortality, elimination of child labor, trauma recovery and educational reform.
Subsequently, Ms Nelson worked on anti-human trafficking initiatives in Moscow, Russia. She then served as an advisor on women’s issues to the Kurdistan Regional Government, and was a member of the High Commission on Violence Against Women. While in Kurdistan, Ms Nelson worked with both government and non-government officials, as well as law enforcement, women’s shelter staff, and medical professionals, to implement effective strategies and solutions to address the unique concerns faced by women and children impacted by acts of violence, including honor killings and domestic and sexual violence. Ms Nelson also served as an advisor with the United States Department of State, assisting Afghan prosecutors with cases of terror suspects at the Justice Center in Parwan, the National Security Court of Afghanistan.
She has been involved in early warning, conflict analysis and response development, facilitation, capacity-building for mediation and dialogue, support to electoral violence prevention campaigns, and promoting conflict-sensitive policy and practice. Ms Rosenblum-Kumar has conducted educational and skills training workshops on conflict transformation for the UN at Headquarters, in field offices, for Pearson Peacekeeping Center in Canada and at a number of schools and universities. Since leaving the UN in July 2014, she is teaching courses on the UN and on peacebuilding at New York University, assisting the Nonviolent Peaceforce as a Senior Advisor for Advocacy and Outreach in NY, overseeing a research project on reconciliation in the Western Balkans, and working on an intergovernmental initiative to develop a knowledge network and resource centre on atrocity prevention and ‘dealing with the past’ after violence.
Two months after ISIS took over Shingal in 2014, David left the KRG and began working on the Yezidi cause as a board member of the Free Yezidi Foundation (pro bono).
David studied at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom.
Since 2010 Ms. van Kampen has practiced at a prestigious international securities firm in New York as a team leader of large attorney teams litigating complex securities, healthcare and financial fraud cases from case inception through trial preparation. Ms. van Kampen has worked on numerous trans-border Dutch language document reviews on behalf of Dutch and Belgian banks, investment firms, pension funds and corporations.
Prior to pursuing a full-time career in law, she served as a Vice President at InterPublic/FCB New York, a global advertising agency and In-house Counsel for Centric Communications Worldwide, a New York-based media and marketing agency she co-founded. Ms. van Kampen’s clients included the British Virgin Islands Tourist Board, the Berlin Tourist Board, the City and Port of Rotterdam and the Amsterdam Diamond Center. Her work on behalf of the British Virgin Islands, including establishing the New York-based British Virgin Islands Press Office, received numerous industry awards including the Forbes American Business Award for Advertising. During her PR career, Catherine worked with thousands of journalists to develop stories about her clients which have appeared in major media outlets throughout the world.
Ms. van Kampen attended Stuart Country Day School in Princeton, New Jersey, where she was honored as a Distinguished Alumni for her volunteer and humanitarian work. She is a graduate of Indiana University and the Seton Hall University School of Law. During law school, Ms. van Kampen interned at the Seton Hall University Center for Social Justice Immigration Law Clinic, working for indigent clients seeking asylum and focusing on violence against immigrant women. After law school, Ms. Van Kampen clerked for the Honorable Margaret M. McVeigh in New Jersey Superior Court, Civil Division, and was trained as a court-certified mediator. Ms. van Kampen is also a graduate of the Inns of Court.
Ms. van Kampen has lived and studied in Zwolle, Netherlands as an American Field Student. She has traveled extensively throughout North America, the Caribbean, Asia and Europe. She has served on the Board of the International Food, Wine and Travel Writers Association, Saint John’s Academy and been active in organizations to promote global tourism and cultural exchange. Ms. van Kampen is currently a volunteer for several international, humanitarian, educational and professional development associations, focusing on women and children. She has been a pro-bono attorney since 1998.
Ms. van Kampen wrote Yezidi Girl, a poem dedicated to Pari Ibrahim and the Free Yezidi Foundation, which can be found online at www.yezidigirl.com
Naomi joins the Free Yezidi Foundation board strictly in a personal capacity, advising FYF leadership on a number of objectives regarding the pursuit of justice, international and domestic legal options for survivors, and advocacy strategies.
Rebecca’s team visited the Free Yezidi Foundation in Kurdistan in 2018, training a brigade of women in counseling skills. She has a law degree from the London School of Economics.
Simon Minks’ list of successful prosecutions (most of them in the appeal stage) includes five members of the terrorist group Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) for their role in the armed conflict in Sri Lanka (April 2015). In December of that year, nine members of an international terrorist group related to Syria and Iraq, which included recruiters and fighters for IS and Jabhat al-Nusra were also brought to trial. Also in 2016 he prosecuted foreign terrorist fighters and is currently dealing with new cases. He is also one of the two prosecutors investigating the suicide of the ICTY convict Mr Praljak who took his life at the premises of the YCTY in November 2017. Three years in near succession, he prosecuted (in appeal) Somali pirates.
Trafigura, the world’s third largest private oil and base metals trader involved in several scandals, was successfully prosecuted (in appeal) by Minks in 2011 for exporting illegal toxic chemical waste to Ivory Coast causing death and injury to more than 30,000 inhabitants. Prosecuted in appeal, seven members of a terrorist organisation known as the Hofstad group were convicted by the court of appeal and sentenced to 13 years imprisonment. An extremely sensitive, complicated and highly controversial case worth mentioning is Minks’ involvement as one of the prosecutors in the decision not to prosecute three former UN Dutchbat commanders for their role in the Srebrenica massacres. According to the Court of Appeal, the prosecutors had made the right decision.
Earlier, in 2004, one of his most noteworthy prosecutions was the arrest of Frans van Anraat, the first man convicted in connection with alleged war crimes committed against Kurds in Iraq and Iran. Following an international investigation, Anraat was found guilty of supplying Saddam Hussein with chemicals in the full knowledge that they would be used in the manufacture and deployment of chemical weapons.
In 2013, 2014 and 2017 he attended as expert speaker an UN expert meeting in Geneva, which dealt with the prosecution of companies accused of human rights violations. Minks gives workshops, training sessions/ presentations for prosecutors, judges and police/public officials about prosecuting warcrimes and terrorism both national and international. Equipped with significant expertise in legal forensic matters, Minks attended as participant and trainer at a mock trial for nuclear global experts, organised by the Dutch Forensic Institute. Currently, he is a member of the Master of Forensic Science Advisory Board of the University of Amsterdam.
- Silav Ibrahim – Country Director
- Hewan Omer – Country Coordinator
- Mamo Haji – Camp Center Manager
- Tiffany Proeger – Administration and Finance
- Eelke Halbertsma – Website and Communications