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Dublin: 18 °C Wednesday 17 July, 2019

Islamic State issues detailed guidelines for sex with female slaves

The guidelines include provisions for how to treat two sisters and mothers and daughters who are held captive together.

 Yazidi Kurdish women hold posters and banners during a protest against the Islamic State
Yazidi Kurdish women hold posters and banners during a protest against the Islamic State
Image: Associated Press

A DOCUMENT WHICH seems to show guidelines for how Islamic State militants should treat female slaves, including how and when they should have sex with them, has emerged.

The document is in the form of a fatwa – a ruling on a point of Islamic law by a ruling authority. It was seized by US Special Operation Forces during a raid in May.

A US government translation of the document is published in full on the Reuters website and contains detailed descriptions on the rape of female slaves and captives. However, Reuters stated that they cannot independently confirm its authenticity.

It is the most detailed description of its sort to be released, and goes further than a pamphlet released last year on how to treat female slaves. Islamic State have also previously circulated a price list for sex slaves.


Guidelines within the document include descriptions on having sex with menstruating women, how to treat sisters, and how to treat a slave who is in joint ownership.

For example:

  • It is not “permissible for the owner of a female captive to have intercourse with her” until after she has completed her menstrual cycle.
  • It is not permissible to allow a captive to have an abortion if she is pregnant.
  • If two sisters are captive then the owner is only allowed to have sex with one of them.

Human rights violations

The document shows human right violations by the extremist Islamist group, which has committed many atrocities since they took over large parts of Iraq and Syria during the summer of 2014.

Human rights groups have previously condemned their capturing of female members of the Yazidi community and selling them into sexual slavery.

In April, Human Rights Watch interviewed 20 females who had escaped from the Islamic State. The group revealed how IS had carried out the “systematic rape and other sexual violence against Yezidi women and girls in northern Iraq.”

Read: Women and young girls are being ‘sold’ or given as ‘gifts’ by Islamic extremists

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About the author:

Cormac Fitzgerald

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