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1 October 2020, Lalish, Iraq

Yezidis Mourn the loss of Baba Sheikh – A Great Yezidi Religious Leader

Baba Sheikh Khurto Haji Ismail, the Yezidi religious leader, passed away today due to health complications, at age 87. The Free Yezidi Foundation mourns the loss of Baba Sheikh, the iconic and symbolic leader of all Yezidis.

Baba Sheikh will be remembered in our history as one of the most important leaders of the Yezidis. His office has worked hard to help Yezidis maintain their identity despite the struggles and challenges our people face. After the 2014 genocide, it was Baba Sheikh made the religious decision to accept Yezidi female survivors back into the community.

Baba Sheikh has comforted those in the Yezidi community suffering the most and has stood as a symbol of pride and resilience for our people during our difficult days. Like many Yezidi leaders, Baba Sheikh will never be forgotten. His open-mindedness, care for our people, compassion, and leadership will remain with all of us in our hearts. It is a very sad day for Yezidis.

The Free Yezidi Foundation sends our condolences and stands in heartfelt solidarity to the family of Baba Sheikh. 

Thank you, Baba Sheikh, for being a tireless champion and compassionate leader of the Yezidi Spiritual Council during the most difficult days.

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For more information, visit www.freeyezidi.org.

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