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'I Want To Go Back': The Yazidi Girls Who Did Not Want To Be Rescued From ISIS

The girls, ages 10 and 11, were held captive for years and remember nothing of their Yazidi heritage. They miss the ISIS woman who looked after them and tell rescuers they want to return to her.
Jeelan, 11, the day after being rescued from an ISIS family that had held her captive for the past two years. She says she doesn't remember her Yazidi family. "I want to go back to Um Ali," she says, referring to the Iraqi woman who had been pretending to be her mother in a detention camp for ISIS families. "Um Ali is my real family." Source: Jane Arraf

Zahura Sinan passes around wrapped candy to guests sitting on carpets in the family's living room in a village in northeastern Syria. It's to celebrate the first day of freedom for two Yazidi girls, liberated from the ISIS family who held them captive for two years.

"This is like their birthday," says Sinan's son Mahmoud Rasho, the Yazidi official who found the girls in a detention camp for ISIS families. For now, his family is taking care of them at their home near the city of Hasakah.

The rescue of two Yazidi girls — who survived a genocide that saw more than 1,000 killed and an estimated 5,000 more from this ancient religious minority held hostage — would normally be a joyous occasion.

But these girls didn't want to be rescued.

Jeelan, 11, sits with her head bowed and her arms wrapped around her knees, a patterned brown-and-white scarf that had covered her hair wrapped around her thin shoulders

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