WHO: Martyr’s Foundation, Mass Graves Directorate, Medico Legal Directorate, UNITAD, ICMP, IOM, in coordination with the Yazidi community

WHAT: Exhumation of mass graves in Solagh and Kojo

WHEN: 24 October 2020, at 11 a.m.

WHERE: Solagh, Sinjar, Ninewa Governorate


In August 2014 the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) launched a deadly assault on Sinjar, Ninewa Governorate, overrunning Sinjar City and its surrounding areas. In Solagh subdistrict, ISIL militants committed mass killings of Yazidi women, and buried them in a mass grave. The remains from two such graves will be exhumed to then be matched, based on DNA sampling, with surviving family members. Authorities will return remains that are eventually identified to their families, giving them the opportunity to finally lay their loved ones to rest, appropriately and according to traditions.

The Iraqi Council of Ministers’ National Coordination Committee, along with the Mass Grave Directorate, Medico Legal Directorate, UNITAD, ICMP and IOM Iraq, invite you to cover the ceremony proceedings that will be held at the Solagh mass grave site. The ceremony will include a Yazidi religious ceremony, speeches by representatives of the Iraqi Government, Kurdish Regional Government and the Yazidi community as well as Special Adviser and Head of UNITAD, Karim A. A. Khan QC and ICMP Iraq Program Deputy Head Fawaz Abdulabbas.

Upon the conclusion of the ceremony, families are invited to provide DNA samples to help identify the remains of any relatives. Families are also invited to provide blood samples at Kojo Primary School Hall the following week and later at Sinjar Hospital.



  • To attend, please ensure compliance with the Iraqi government’s regulations regarding social distancing, wearing a mask, and other COVID19 emergency guidelines.
  • Please also note the attached media circular for guidance on coverage of mass grave exhumations.

For further details about the process following the exhumation please contact Mr. Georges Fakhry, Chief Public Information Officer for the United Nations Investigative Team to Promote Accountability for Crimes Committed by Da’esh/ISIL. Phone: +9647833068026, E-mail: