Middle East

Mount Sinjar: Yazidis' tales of survival as thousands cling on for life

Yazidis on Mount Sinjar

Months after thousands of Iraqi Yezidis threatened by Islamic State (IS) militants escaped to safety from Mount Sinjar, the BBC's Nafiseh Kohnavard has gained rare access to the mountain, where thousands more civilians who did not flee are still trapped.

IS fighters have surrounded the area again, leaving many families with little access to food or water.

Four months since the US and Britain provided aid to those stranded, those that remain rely on Iraqi helicopters for life-saving provisions and rescue.

The people face regular attacks by IS but have few heavy weapons to defend themselves.

Haydar is a teenage Yazidi boy who says he has taken up arms to protect his family

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionHaydar on fighting IS: "Now is not the time for school"

Ahmed Thwenee is an Iraqi air force helicopter pilot who flies regular aid and rescue missions to Sinjar

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionAhmed Thwenee: "It's a real tragic situation for this people"

After helping Yazidis escape from IS, Aliya and Azan's family first went on the run only to then find themselves trapped for months on Sinjar

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionAliya Ali: Bullets were passing over us like rain"

More on this story