SINJAR MIKKEL SOMMER & TORE RØRBÆK Forlaens (Denmark) | Summer 2020 | 90 Pages | Color
Translation grants available from the Danish Arts Foundation In 2016, Nadia Murad, the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize, and at least other 3000 women were taken hostage by ISIS and routinely raped. A new graphic novel reminiscent of the Golden Globe winner Valzer with Bashir mixes the memories of two survivors with fly-on-the-wall realism to tell the story of a religious minority’s desperate struggle for survival against the savagery of Daesh militias. Sinjar is the story of the 73rd. Time after time, Yazidis have found refuge on Mount Sinjar, the sacred mountain that in dire straits has saved them from complete annihilation. In the heat of August 2014, more than 50.000 people found themselves stranded on that very mountaintop besieged by an army belonging to ISIS. Unbelievable as it may seem, an horde of religious fanatics who not too long ago had been their peaceful neighbors set out to wipe them out completely from the face of the earth, exterminating the men and making the women slaves of the Islamic caliphate. Narrated through the memories of two cousins who survived the massacre to tell their stories, Asmail and Mazlum, Sinjar follows the Yazidis’ mass exodus from the day they were left behind by the Kurdish Peshmerga in their retreat before ISIS to the day 50.000 Yazidis, half of them women and children, were evacuated by the Kurdish militias PKK and YPG. Sinjar is a fast-paced, gritty fictionalized account of a largely misrepresented, horrendous story. Based on countless testimonies gathered on the ground, Sinjar aims at bring attention on a issue that unfortunately hasn’t had its happy ending yet. To this day, three thousand Yazidis women and young girls are still held captive by ISIS and used as sex slaves. TORE RØRBÆK is a Danish journalist and documentarist. In the past, he has reported from Iraq and Syria for Danish daily newspapers Kristeligt Dagblad and Jyllands-Posten, as well as the Danish Broadcasting Corporation. MIKKEL SOMMER is a Danish artist. Over the years, he has worked on several comics and children's books, as well as animated films and editorial illustrations for The New York Times and The New Yorker. He is based in Berlin and Athens.