Trial of ISIS member begins in Germany


The trial of an alleged Islamic State member has begun in Frankfurt, following allegations that he was part of an effort to exterminate the Yazidi religious minority and a five-year-old girl.

The 27 year old Taha Al-J killed the girl he purchased as a slave by chaining her in the hot sun to die of thirst.

The suspect whose full last name wasn’t given in line with German privacy laws, faces a possible life in prison if convicted of the charges, and others including murder for the death of the Yazidi girl and membership in a terrorist organization.

Prosecutors allege that, In 2015, Al-J. bought a Yazidi woman and her 5-year-old daughter as slaves at an IS base in Syria.

The two had since then been taken as prisoners by the militants in northern Iraq at the beginning of August, 2014, and had been sold and resold several times as slaves by the group already.

The Frankfurt state court said as the trial opened that, “Taha Al-J. intended to exterminate the religious minority of the Yazidis by his acquisition of the two Yazidi females, and to have personal benefits from their services in his household.”

According to the indictment, after purchasing the woman and her daughter, Al-J. took the two to his household in the Iraqi city of Fallujah and forced them to keep house and to live according to strict Islamic rules, while giving them insufficient food and subjecting them to beating to punish them.

He later on, towards the end of 2015, chained the 5 year old girl to the bars of a window in the open sun on a day where it reached 50 degrees Celsius (122 Fahrenheit) and she died from the punishment.

Prosecutors in the case said the punishment was carried out because the 5-year-old had wet the bed.

Al-J.’s wife, a German convert to Islam identified only as 28-year-old Jennifer W., has also been on trial separately in Munich since last April on charges of murder, war crimes and membership in a terrorist organization.

The charges against her are based partially on the allegation that she did nothing to help the girl.

Al-J. was still at large when his wife went on trial, but was arrested a month later in Greece and extradited to Germany in October.

The United Nations has called the IS assault on the Yazidis’ ancestral homeland in northern Iraq in 2014 a genocide, saying the Yazidis’ 400,000-strong community “had all been displaced, captured or killed.” Of the thousands captured by IS, boys were forced to fight for the extremists, men were executed if they didn’t convert to Islam – and often executed in any case – and women and girls were sold into slavery.

The trial against her Taha Al-J is scheduled to resume April 27.

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