BAGHDAD, Iraqi newly elected President, Barham Salih, and Parliament Speaker, Mohammed al-Halbousi, congratulated Nadia Murad, a Yazidi woman, who was awarded the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize, for her efforts against the use of sexual violence, as a weapon of war.

“I spoke by telephone with Nadia Murad and congratulated her for her Nobel Peace Prize. Nadia’s honour reflects the world’s recognition of the tragedy of the Yazidis and all victims of terrorism in Iraq,” Salih said.

He hailed Murad’s award as “an appreciation for her courage and persistence, in defending the usurped rights,” and “a tribute to the struggle and steadfastness of Iraqis, in the face of terrorism and extremism.” Halbousi called the award, “a real recognition to the sacrifices made and still making by Iraq, on behalf of the world.”

“Nadia Murad became an icon of patience, sacrifice and courage, and a symbol of rejection of injustice and tyranny,” he said. Earlier in the day, the Norwegian Nobel Institute in Oslo, announced Nadia Murad and Denis Mukwege as laureates of the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize.

Nadia Murad is a 25-year-old woman, who advocates on behalf of her community and survivors of genocide. She was born in the village of Kojo, near the town of Sinjar, some 100 km west of Iraq’s northern city of Mosul. Her family of the Yazidi ethno-religious minority were farmers. Murad was among thousands of Yazidi women who were abducted in 2014, and enslaved by the self-styled Daesh terrorist group. She had been repeatedly raped before escaping with the help of a family to safe areas outside the Daesh-controlled territory.

The Yazidi minority are primarily ethnic Kurds, whose religion incorporates elements of many faiths. There are about 600,000 Yazidis in Iraq, about 80 percent of them living in the towns of Sinjar and Bashiqa, in Iraq’s northern province of Nineveh.