Johnson, Murphy Resolution Condemning Sexual Violence Against Women and Children by ISIS Militants Passes Senate

WASHINGTON — A bipartisan resolution introduced by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) and co-sponsored by Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.), and Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) condemning the ongoing sexual violence against women and children of Yezidi, Christian, Shabak, Turkmen, and other religious communities by ISIS militants passed the full Senate Wednesday.

Senate Res. 310 also urges the prosecution of the perpetrators of the violence and those complicit in these crimes. It was passed through the Senate Foreign Relations Committee by voice vote last month.

ISIS publicly and systematically targets communities on the basis of their religious identities using a crusade of violence that includes executions, beheadings, arbitrary detainment, forced displacement, torture, enslavement, rape and other sexual violence. Johnson’s resolution condemns these outrages. It calls upon the attorney general to commence the investigation and prosecution of any United States citizen alleged to be a perpetrator of this targeted violence or complicit in these crimes and urges the government of Iraq and other countries to act similarly.

“I recently had the opportunity to meet a young Yezidi woman who went by the name Bazi," said Johnson following passage of his resolution through committee. “She was held by ISIS as a slave for months and was a victim to extreme brutality. She came to the United States to raise awareness of the sexual violence and religious persecution that is ongoing at the hands of ISIS militants. During our meeting we spoke about America’s role in the world helping to prevent these atrocities. Often, if the United States doesn’t help, no one will. That discussion stuck with me. This resolution is a necessary first step in raising awareness and holding these evil perpetrators and accomplices accountable. I am pleased that this bipartisan effort to protect vulnerable women and children has now passed the full Senate.”

"We can no longer turn a blind eye to the ISIS terrorists who rape, torture, and imprison innocent women and children,” said Murphy. “Sexual violence is a brutal weapon of war, and women from the Yezidi, Shabak, Turkmen and Christian communities have been systematically targeted for far too long. These women are hiding in the shadows of fear and the shameful stigma of abuse, while their perpetrators go free. I’m proud to join a bipartisan coalition that worked to get this resolution passed. It’s an important step in condemning this barbaric violence and finally bringing the terrorists to justice.”

Full text of the resolution can be found here.