Tens of thousands of people fled, with many ending up on in dire straits on nearby Mount Sinjar, creating an urgent humanitarian situation that led to US President Barack Obama ordering American jets to bomb IS for the first time. Thousands of Yazidis were killed by IS, with women being raped and enslaved to be sold as property. Mass graves are still being discovered.
Pushing Back the Islamic State [Video]
Islamic State (IS) fighters swept into the Iraqi city of Sinjar in August 2014, forcing Kurdish peshmerga forces to retreat. The city, primarily made up of Yazidis, a religious minority with roots going back thousands of years in the region, was soon overran with IS militants. They then set about terrorizing the Yazidis, who they see as apostates and devil worshippers who need to be cleansed.