Motion for a resolution - B8-0156/2016Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on systematic mass murder of religious minorities by ISIS

27.1.2016 - (2016/2529(RSP))

to wind up the debate on the statement by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
pursuant to Rule 123(2) of the Rules of Procedure

Miguel Urbán Crespo, Javier Couso Permuy, Patrick Le Hyaric, Neoklis Sylikiotis, Takis Hadjigeorgiou, Younous Omarjee, Fabio De Masi, Merja Kyllönen, Tania González Peñas, Lola Sánchez Caldentey, Xabier Benito Ziluaga, Estefanía Torres Martínez, Kostadinka Kuneva, Kostas Chrysogonos, Helmut Scholz, Stelios Kouloglou, Marie-Christine Vergiat on behalf of the GUE/NGL Group

Procedure : 2016/2529(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected :  
Texts tabled :
Debates :
Texts adopted :


European Parliament resolution on systematic mass murder of religious minorities by ISIS


The European Parliament,

–  having regard to UN Security Council resolution 2118 (2013) on the Middle East (S/RES/2118 (2013),

–  having regard to its resolutions of 17 July 2014[1] and 27 February 2014[2] on the situation in Iraq,

–  having regard to its resolution of 14 March 2013 on Iraq: the plight of minority groups, including the Iraqi Turkmen[3],

–  having regard to its resolutions of 6 February 2014[4], 12 September 2013 on Syria and the one of 17 April 2014 on Syria: situation in certain vulnerable communities[5],

–  having regard to its resolution of 12 February 2015 on the humanitarian crisis in Iraq and Syria, in particular in the IS context[6],

–  having regard to its previous resolution on the situation in Iraq and Syria since the outbreak of sectarian violence,

–  having regard to the Council conclusions of 16 March 2015 on the EU regional strategy for Syria and Iraq as well as the ISIL/Daesh threat,

–  having regard to the Council conclusions of 12 October 2015, 20 January 2014 and 14 April 2014 on Syria,

–  having regard to the Council conclusions of 14 December 2015, 15 August 2014, 23 June 2014 and February 2014 on Iraq,

–  having regard to the statement by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy of 20 January 2016 on mass murders of religious minorities by ISIS,

–  having regard to the Charter of the United Nations,

–  having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,

–  having regard to the Geneva Conventions on refugees,

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas the systematic attacks against civilians, abuses of human rights and violations of international law carried out by ISIS, including those perpetrated on religious or ethnic grounds, constitute a threat to international peace;

B.  whereas the interventionist policy of the US and its allies in the Middle East has contributed to the instability and deep crisis affecting the entire region, which has now become the arena of dispute for diverse powers trying to exert their influence;

C.  whereas on 29 June 2014 ISIS proclaimed a ‘caliphate’ or ‘Islamic State’ in the territories under its control in Iraq and Syria; whereas its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has been declared caliph; whereas the radical Islamists of ISIS now control large parts of Iraq and Syria;

D.  whereas the conflicts in Iraq and Syria and the disintegration of those countries have provided these radical Islamic forces with the opportunity to occupy large parts of the territory of the two countries and to establish a so-called Islamic State (ISIS);

E.  whereas ISIS has carried out ethnic cleansing in northern Iraq; whereas it has systematically targeted secular people, non-Arabs and non-Sunni Muslim communities, as well as Sunni Muslims not following ISIS’s barbaric and fundamentalist way of understanding their religion, killing or abducting thousands of people and forcing over a million to flee the areas it has captured in Iraq and Syria; whereas the vast majority of victims of ISIS are Muslims;

F.  whereas ethnic and religious minorities – Assyrian Christians, Turkmen Shi’a, Shabak Shi’a, Yazidis, Kakai and Sabean Mandaeans – have lived together for centuries in Nineveh province (a large part of which is now under the control of ISIS); whereas in that province those who were unable to flee when ISIS fighters seized the area remain trapped under threat of death unless they convert to Islam;

G.  whereas thousands of Yazidis, most of them women and children from the Sinjar region (Iraq), were abducted as they fled the ISIS takeover in August 2014; whereas several mass killings have been reported, including those in Kocho, Qiniyeh and Jdali; whereas the latest revelations speak of brutal massacres and confirm that several mass graves have been discovered and are believed to contain hundreds of Yazidi bodies; whereas the UN has described this attack on the Yazidis as a possible genocide;

H.  whereas men, women and children are systematically targeted on the basis of their ethnic, religious or sectarian affiliation; whereas this targeting of minorities is related to horrific human rights violations such as targeted killings, forced conversions, abductions, slavery, sex crimes, forced recruitment and destruction of places of worship;

I.  whereas Christians living in areas under the control of ISIS who wish to remain there face three options: converting to Islam, paying a religious levy, or death; whereas since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003 at least half of Iraq’s Christians are believed to have left the country;

J.  whereas the forced displacement of Iraq’s ethnic and religious minorities is a historical tragedy, not only destroying lives but causing irreparable damage to the fabric of Iraqi society and consequently fuelling interethnic, sectarian and interreligious tensions in the region and beyond;

K.  whereas ISIS has secured significant income sources by looting banks and businesses on territory it controls and taking over important oilfields in Syria and Iraq; whereas ISIS has received funds from donors, particularly in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates, countries themselves well known for their severe human rights violations;

L.  whereas a large part of the more than half a million registered Palestinian refugees in Syria have been made refugees for a second time, as they have had to flee refugee camps and towns in Syria as a result of military groups moving in, occupying the camps and violating the refugees’ neutrality;

1.  Strongly condemns the mass killings and other human rights violations perpetrated by ISIS, in all cases and independently of the victims’ ethnic origin or minority religious affiliation; expresses its deepest sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims, and calls for the release of those being held hostage by this terrorist group;

2.  Express its deep concern at the rise of violence and systematic human rights violations by ISIS, resulting in numerous civilians being killed and thousands of people being displaced;

3.  Stresses that all individuals responsible for crimes such as genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes must be brought before the International Court of Justice, as laid down in the Rome Statute and in line with existing international law;

4.  Calls for a political solution involving all political and social actors in order to respond to the challenge of combating ISIS within a long-term strategy coherent with democratic values and respect for human rights; welcomes the Geneva II negotiations aimed at finding a solution to the war in Syria; insists on the need to support democracy as a basic route towards putting an end to ISIS; recalls that the vast majority of ISIS victims are Muslims and that it is therefore the local populations who are those mainly affected;

5.  Stresses the need to close off the financial sources and logistic supply lines that support ISIS; recalls in this context that most of the military equipment used by ISIS is manufactured in the West and that it is therefore of paramount importance to ensure an immediate end to the sale of arms to conflict areas; calls on foreign actors to stop all arms exports and deliveries to the region; calls, in particular, on the states themselves and on Western countries to stop financing any militia and, in particular, to stop buying oil that originates in oilfields controlled by ISIS and is transported by lorries through Turkey;

6.  Expresses its concern at the humanitarian crisis in Iraq and Syria which has been exacerbated by ISIS, forcing thousands of people to become refugees and flee their homes; encourages the Council, the Commission and the High Representative to make all necessary financial and human resources available to assist the refugees; stresses the need to provide appropriate humanitarian aid to those displaced and to ensure full and equal protection for vulnerable communities at risk;

7.  Expresses its full support for a political solution to the conflict in Syria that will safeguard the sovereignty of the country and guarantee the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all Syrians, irrespective of their ethnic or religious background;

8.  Considers that the invasion of Iraq, the sectarian policies of Al Maliki’s government, and the war in Syria created a breeding ground for the spread of ISIS; calls for the need to end the wars in both Syria and Iraq; reiterates that the tasks of pacification and stabilisation can only be implemented by broad consensus in the framework of the UN; reiterates its opposition to any external military intervention in Syria, underlining the shared need to engage in a peaceful and inclusive political dialogue so as to initiate reconciliation and help restore stability in the country and the region;

9.  Underlines the worsening situation of women in Iraq, occurring in parallel to their country’s destruction over the last thirty years, with women remaining trapped between the lack of importance given to them in Iraqi society, a situation which has darkened with the presence of ISIS, and the vision of law held by ISIS which condemns Iraqi women to ostracism;

10.  Reiterates that the entire region is undergoing historical displacement movements, and that regional actors are therefore key in trying to address this challenge; considers that a solid, long-term solution must be based on dialogue among all the communities and minority groups that have historically lived side by side, constituting a valuable example of cultural heterogeneity and peaceful coexistence;

11.  Calls on the Council to take the lead in convening an international conference for the prohibition and ecological destruction of the world’s entire arsenal of weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear, chemical and bacteriological weapons;

12.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the President of the European Council, the President of the Commission, the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the head of the EU Delegation in Iraq, the presidents of the parliaments of the Member States, the Government and Council of Representatives of the Republic of Iraq, the Government and Parliament of the Syrian Arab Republic, the Secretary-General of the Union for the Mediterranean and the League of Arab State.