The Yezidis, also called Yazidis, are a religious and ethnic group that lives mostly in northern Iraq. There are also villages in Syria and Turkey, and there are Yezidis living in many other countries. The Yazidis' religion, which includes parts of Zoroastrianism, Islam, Christianity, and other Mesopotamian religions, is one of the oldest religions that people still follow today. Melek Taus, the Peacock Angel, is the most important person in their faith. They see him as a link between God and people.
There are problems between the Yezidis and their Muslim neighbors, as well as with other religious and racial groups. These problems have roots in religion, society, and history. People in other areas have often misread and even hated the Yezidis because of their unique beliefs. Some Muslim and non-Muslim groups have wrongly accused them of worshiping the devil because they respect Melek Taus. This has caused them to be shunned and persecuted.
Yezidis have been repressed, persecuted, and targeted for violence many times over the ages. This includes killings, forced conversions, and other violent acts meant to wipe out their faith and society. The most recent and well-known case of this kind of abuse happened in 2014, when the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) went after the Yezidi group in Sinjar, Iraq. Thousands of Yezidi men were killed by ISIS militants, and thousands of women and children were taken hostage and raped or made to become Muslims. The United Nations has said that this cruel effort against the Yezidis is a genocide.
Some Islamic groups are hostile toward the Yezidis, but this isn't because of what Islam actually teaches. Instead, it's because groups like ISIS have taken the religion to extreme and wrong places. Extremist groups have tried to use a radical philosophy that is very different from mainstream Islamic beliefs and practices to explain why they are persecuting the Yezidis and other minority groups.
The Yezidis have been persecuted and hurt by many groups over many ages. This shows how hard it is for them to keep their faith and community alive. It also brings up the bigger problem of religious and racial hatred in the area and how important it is for the whole world to know about and help protect minorities who are at risk.