Islamic State kills at least 500 from Iraq's Yazidi minority: Baghdad

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Islamic State kills at least 500 from Iraq's Yazidi minority: Baghdad
IDLIB, SYRIA - SEPTEMBER 23: Syrians inspect the rubble of destroyed houses following the U.S.-led coalition's airstrikes against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) on a residential area in Idlib, Syria on September 23, 2014. (Photo by Ahmed Hasan Ubeyd/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
IDLIB, SYRIA - SEPTEMBER 23: A Syrian youth walks past the wreckage of a vehicle following the U.S.-led coalition's airstrikes against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) on a residential area in Idlib, Syria on September 23, 2014. (Photo by Ahmed Hasan Ubeyd/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
IDLIB, SYRIA - SEPTEMBER 23: Syrians collect remains from the rubble of a destroyed house following the U.S.-led coalition's airstrikes against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) on a residential area in Idlib, Syria on September 23, 2014. (Photo by Ahmed Hasan Ubeyd/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
FILE- In this file photo released by the U.S. Navy on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014, A-18C Hornet, attached to Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 87, prepares to launch from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) to conduct strike missions against Islamic State group targets, in the Arabian Gulf. Arab countries’ prominent role in initial airstrikes against the Islamic State group in Syria shatters the notion of what a typical American-led military operation looks like and won the Mideast allies' praise from U.S. President Barack Obama for their willingness to stand “shoulder-to-shoulder" with the United States. (AP Photo/Robert Burck, U.S. Navy-file)
In this photo released by the U.S. Navy, the guided-missile destroyer USS Arleigh Burke (DDG 51) launches Tomahawk cruise missiles, in the Arabian Gulf, Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria. (AP Photo/Carlos M. Vazquez II, U.S. Navy)
In this photo released by the U.S. Navy, sailors stand watch on the bridge while Tomahawk cruise missiles are launched aboard the guided-missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea (CG 58), in the Arabian Gulf, Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria. (AP Photo/Abe McNatt, U.S. Navy)
This photo provided by an anti-Bashar Assad activist group Edlib News Network (ENN), which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows parts of a missile that activists say was fired by coalition airstrikes, in the village of Kfar Derian, a base for the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front, a rival of the Islamic State group, between the northern province of Aleppo and Idlib, Syria, Tuesday Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria. (AP Photo/Edlib News Network ENN)
This photo provided by an anti-Bashar Assad activist group Edlib News Network (ENN), which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows a Syrian boy, left, looking at a destroyed car that activists say was targeted by the coalition airstrikes, in the village of Kfar Derian, a base for the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front, a rival of the Islamic State group, between the northern province of Aleppo and Idlib, Syria, Tuesday Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria. (AP Photo/Edlib News Network ENN)
This photo provided by an anti-Bashar Assad activist group Edlib News Network (ENN), which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows Syrian citizens checking a damaged house that they say was targeted by the coalition airstrikes, in the village of Kfar Derian, a base for the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front, a rival of the Islamic State group, between the northern province of Aleppo and Idlib, Syria, Tuesday Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria. (AP Photo/Edlib News Network ENN)
This photo provided by an anti-Bashar Assad activist group Edlib News Network (ENN), which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows Syrian citizens checking a damaged house that they say was targeted by the coalition airstrikes, in the village of Kfar Derian, a base for the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front, a rival of the Islamic State group, between the northern province of Aleppo and Idlib, Syria, Tuesday Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria. (AP Photo/Edlib News Network ENN)
This photo provided by an anti-Bashar Assad activist group Edlib News Network (ENN), which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, show according to them Syrian citizens check a damaged house that targeted by the coalition airstrikes, in the village of Kfar Derian, a base for the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front, a rival of the Islamic State group, between the northern province of Aleppo and Idlib, Syria, Tuesday Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria. (AP Photo/Edlib News Network ENN)
This still image from video released by the U.S. Central Command on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014, shows a pilot in a KC-135 Stratotanker aerial refueling aircraft in mid-air in an unknown area of Syria. In three waves of nighttime attacks launched over four hours early on Tuesday, the U.S. and its Arab partners made more than 200 airstrikes against roughly a dozen militant targets in Syria. They included the Islamic State group headquarters, training camps and barracks, and targets of the rival Nusra Front, al-Qaida's branch within Syria. (AP Photo/US Central Command)
In this image provided by the U.S. Navy a F/A-18F Super Hornet attached to the Fighting Black Lions of Strike Fighter Squadron flies over the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush in the Persian Gulf on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014, after conducting strike missions against Islamic State group targets in Syria. (AP Photo/U.S. Navy, Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Brian Stephens)
This still image made from video released by the U.S. Central Command on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014, shows a structure in Tall Al Qitar, Syria moments after a U.S. airstrike. In three waves of nighttime attacks launched over four hours early on Tuesday, the U.S. and its Arab partners made more than 200 airstrikes against roughly a dozen militant targets in Syria. (AP Photo/US Central Command)
This still image made from video released by the U.S. Central Command on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014, shows a structure in Tall Al Qitar, Syria moments after a U.S. airstrike. In three waves of nighttime attacks launched over four hours early on Tuesday, the U.S. and its Arab partners made more than 200 airstrikes against roughly a dozen militant targets in Syria. (AP Photo/US Central Command)
This still image made from video released by the U.S. Central Command on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014, shows a structure in Tall Al Qitar, Syria moments after a U.S. airstrike. In three waves of nighttime attacks launched over four hours early on Tuesday, the U.S. and its Arab partners made more than 200 airstrikes against roughly a dozen militant targets in Syria. (AP Photo/US Central Command)
This photo provided by an anti-Bashar Assad activist group Edlib News Network (ENN), which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows Syrian citizens checking a damaged house that they say was targeted by the coalition airstrikes, in the village of Kfar Derian, a base for the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front, a rival of the Islamic State group, between the northern province of Aleppo and Idlib, Syria, Tuesday Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria. (AP Photo/Edlib News Network ENN)
In this photo released by the U.S. Navy, the guided-missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea launches a Tomahawk cruise missile at Islamic State group positions in Syria as seen from the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush on the Arabian Gulf on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria.(AP Photo/Eric Garst, U.S. Navy)
In this photo released by the U.S. Navy, the guided-missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea launches a Tomahawk cruise missile at Islamic State group positions in Syria as seen from the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush in the Arabian Gulf on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria.(AP Photo/Eric Garst, U.S. Navy)
This photo provided by an anti-Bashar Assad activist group Edlib News Network (ENN), which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows parts of a missile that activists say was fired by coalition airstrikes, in the village of Kfar Derian, a base for the al-Qaida-linked Nusra Front, a rival of the Islamic State group, between the northern province of Aleppo and Idlib, Syria, Tuesday Sept. 23, 2014. Syria said Tuesday that Washington informed President Bashar Assad's government of imminent U.S. airstrikes against the Islamic State group, hours before an American-led military coalition pounded the extremists' strongholds across northern and eastern Syria. (AP Photo/Edlib News Network ENN)
Graphic shows five Arab countries that conducted airstrikes against the Islamic State group in Syria; 1c x 3 inches; 46.5 mm x 76 mm;
Anti-war activists hold placards during a rally denouncing US' air strike on Syria and Iraq, near the US embassy in Seoul on September 15, 2014. 'All bases are covered' in a US-led multinational coalition against the Islamic State, John Kerry said, as Washington rallies diplomatic and public support to smash the jihadists. AFP PHOTO / JUNG YEON-JE (Photo credit should read JUNG YEON-JE/AFP/Getty Images)
FILE - In this Monday, Aug. 11, 2014 file photo, F/A-18 fighter jets take off for mission in Iraq from the flight deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush, in the Persian Gulf. U.S. military officials said American fighter aircraft struck and destroyed several vehicles a day earlier that were part of an Islamic State group convoy moving to attack Kurdish forces defending the northeastern Iraqi city of Irbil. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)
A U.S. sailor checks missiles attached to a military jet being prepared aboard the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush in the Persian Gulf, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. U.S. military officials said American fighter aircraft struck and destroyed several vehicles Sunday that were part of an Islamic State group convoy moving to attack Kurdish forces defending the northeastern Iraqi city of Irbil. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)
A U.S. F/A-18 fighter jet takes off for Iraq from the flight deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush in the Persian Gulf, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. U.S. military officials said American fighter aircraft struck and destroyed several vehicles Sunday that were part of an Islamic State group convoy moving to attack Kurdish forces defending the northeastern Iraqi city of Irbil. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)
A U.S. F/A-18 fighter jet takes off for Iraq from the flight deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush, in the Persian Gulf, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. U.S. military officials say American fighter aircraft struck and destroyed several vehicles Sunday that were part of an Islamic State group convoy moving to attack Kurdish forces defending the northeastern Iraqi city of Irbil. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)
U.S. F/A-18 fighter jets take off for mission in Iraq from the flight deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush, in the Persian Gulf, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. U.S. military officials said American fighter aircraft struck and destroyed several vehicles Sunday that were part of an Islamic State group convoy moving to attack Kurdish forces defending the northeastern Iraqi city of Irbil. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)
U.S. F/A-18 fighter jets prepare to take off for Iraq from the flight deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush in the Persian Gulf, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. U.S. military officials said American fighter aircraft struck and destroyed several vehicles Sunday that were part of an Islamic State group convoy moving to attack Kurdish forces defending the northeastern Iraqi city of Irbil. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)
U.S. F/A-18 fighter jets prepare for take off for Iraq from the flight deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush in the Persian Gulf, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. U.S. military officials said American fighter aircraft struck and destroyed several vehicles Sunday that were part of an Islamic State group convoy moving to attack Kurdish forces defending the northeastern Iraqi city of Irbil. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)
FILE - In this Sunday, Aug. 10, 2014, file photo, a fighter jet coming from Iraq lands on the flight deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush, in the Persian Gulf. As the United States looks to stitch together a coalition to tackle the extremist Islamic State group, the Obama administration will have to overcome the reluctance of Mideast allies who are deeply frustrated with a White House that they believe has been naive, fickle and weak on Syria’s civil war. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali, File)
SALADIN, IRAQ - SEPTEMBER 1: Locals celebrate after Iraqi forces have freed the northern town of Amirli which had been under the siege of Islamic State militants for over two months in Saladin ,Iraq on September 1, 2014. Supported by Kurdish forces and Shiite militias, the Iraqi army launched an offensive shortly after the U.S. carried out airstrikes against Islamic State (IS) positions near the town, and dropped aid for the nearly 20,000 Shiite Turkmen trapped in Amirli. The government forces and Kurdish peshmerga forces have been fighting against the militant group to block their advance. (Photo by Stringer/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
SALADIN, IRAQ - SEPTEMBER 1: A Shiite militant is seen after Iraqi forces have freed the northern town of Amirli which had been under the siege of Islamic State militants for over two months in Saladin ,Iraq on September 1, 2014. Supported by Kurdish forces and Shiite militias, the Iraqi army launched an offensive shortly after the U.S. carried out airstrikes against Islamic State (IS) positions near the town, and dropped aid for the nearly 20,000 Shiite Turkmen trapped in Amirli. The government forces and Kurdish peshmerga forces have been fighting against the militant group to block their advance. (Photo by Stringer/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
KHAZIR FRONTLINE, KRG, IRAQ - 2014/08/26: Candid portrait of a young Peshmerga soldier at the Kazhir Frontline. Khazir refugee camp is located outside Kalak, a town halfway on the road between Erbil and Mosul. It was overrun by ISIS militants on the 7th of August following an unprecedented push of the Caliphate into Kurdish territory. Its thousands of Iraqi and Arab refugees were forced to flee again as the now deserted camp has become the new frontline between the Peshmerga and ISIS. It is the theatre of frequent U.S. airstrikes that have helped halt the ISIS advance into a stalemate situation. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)
SALADIN, IRAQ - AUGUST 31: An Iraqi armed soldier flashes victory sign after Iraqi forces have entered the northern town of Amirli which had been under the siege of Islamic State militants for over two months in Saladin ,Iraq on August 31, 2014. Supported by Kurdish forces and Shiite militias, the Iraqi army launched an offensive shortly after the U.S. carried out airstrikes against Islamic State (IS) positions near the town, and dropped aid for the nearly 20,000 Shiite Turkmen trapped in Amirli. The government forces and Kurdish peshmerga forces have been fighting against the militant group to block their advance. (Stringer - Anadolu Agency)
KHAZIR FRONTLINE, KRG, IRAQ - 2014/08/26: A Peshmerga soldier makes a victory sign on top of a bunker at the Khazir Frontline. Khazir refugee camp is located outside Kalak, a town halfway on the road between Erbil and Mosul. It was overrun by ISIS militants on the 7th of August following an unprecedented push of the Caliphate into Kurdish territory. Its thousands of Iraqi and Arab refugees were forced to flee again as the now deserted camp has become the new frontline between the Peshmerga and ISIS. It is the theatre of frequent U.S. airstrikes that have helped halt the ISIS advance into a stalemate situation. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)
KHAZIR FRONTLINE, KRG, IRAQ - 2014/08/26: Overview of the Kazhir Frontline where a Russian-made T55 tank is positioned facing toward ISIS lines, a few kilometers away. Khazir refugee camp is located outside Kalak, a town halfway on the road between Erbil and Mosul. It was overrun by ISIS militants on the 7th of August following an unprecedented push of the Caliphate into Kurdish territory. Its thousands of Iraqi and Arab refugees were forced to flee again as the now deserted camp has become the new frontline between the Peshmerga and ISIS. It is the theatre of frequent U.S. airstrikes that have helped halt the ISIS advance into a stalemate situation. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)
KHAZIR FRONTLINE, KRG, IRAQ - 2014/08/26: An American Humvee is potionned on the Khazir Frontline. It was captured from ISIS militants by Peshmerga soldiers. Khazir refugee camp is located outside Kalak, a town halfway on the road between Erbil and Mosul. It was overrun by ISIS militants on the 7th of August following an unprecedented push of the Caliphate into Kurdish territory. Its thousands of Iraqi and Arab refugees were forced to flee again as the now deserted camp has become the new frontline between the Peshmerga and ISIS. It is the theatre of frequent U.S. airstrikes that have helped halt the ISIS advance into a stalemate situation. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)
SALADIN, IRAQ - AUGUST 31: The Hezbollah flag waving after Iraqi forces have entered the northern town of Amirli which had been under the siege of Islamic State militants for over two months in Saladin ,Iraq on August 31, 2014. Supported by Kurdish forces and Shiite militias, the Iraqi army launched an offensive shortly after the U.S. carried out airstrikes against Islamic State (IS) positions near the town, and dropped aid for the nearly 20,000 Shiite Turkmen trapped in Amirli. The government forces and Kurdish peshmerga forces have been fighting against the militant group to block their advance. (Stringer - Anadolu Agency)
SALADIN, IRAQ - AUGUST 31: Iraqi armed forces have entered the northern town of Amirli which had been under the siege of Islamic State militants for over two months in Saladin ,Iraq on August 31, 2014. Supported by Kurdish forces and Shiite militias, the Iraqi army launched an offensive shortly after the U.S. carried out airstrikes against Islamic State (IS) positions near the town, and dropped aid for the nearly 20,000 Shiite Turkmen trapped in Amirli. The government forces and Kurdish peshmerga forces have been fighting against the militant group to block their advance. (Photo by Stringer/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
SALADIN, IRAQ - SEPTEMBER 1: A Shiite militant makes victory sign as he stands guard after Iraqi forces have entered the northern town of Amirli which had been under the siege of Islamic State militants for over two months in Saladin ,Iraq on September1, 2014. Supported by Kurdish forces and Shiite militias, the Iraqi army launched an offensive shortly after the U.S. carried out airstrikes against Islamic State (IS) positions near the town, and dropped aid for the nearly 20,000 Shiite Turkmen trapped in Amirli. The government forces and Kurdish peshmerga forces have been fighting against the militant group to block their advance. (Photo by Stringer/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
An F/A-18C Hornet coming from Iraq lands on the flight deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush on Sunday, Aug. 10, 2014 in the Persian Gulf. Aircrafts aboard the George H.W. Bush are flying missions over Iraq after U.S. President Barack Obama authorized airstrikes against Islamic militants and food drops for Iraqis trapped by the fighters. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali)
In this Saturday, Aug. 9, 2014 photo, Palestinians stand on the rubble of the Al-Qassam mosque that was hit by an Israeli airstrike in the Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip. Israel has hit and destroyed 63 mosques in Gaza in its month-old war with Hamas, Palestinian officials say. The reason, Israel says, is that Hamas is using mosques to stockpile weapons and rocket launchers and hide tunnels. Gaza’s Hamas rulers deny the accusations. But in its determination to go after what it says are militant arsenals, Israel is throwing aside any reluctance it had in the past to hit religious sites for fear of a diplomatic backlash. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
An Iraqi Yazidi man visits the holy Lalish temple in the Mountains of Shikhan, Iraq, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. U.S. President Barack Obama authorized airstrikes to protect U.S. interests and personnel in the region, including at facilities in Irbil, as well as helping the Kurdish-speaking ethno-religious group Yazidi refugees who are fleeing from Islamic militants. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Displaced Iraqis from the Yazidi community settle near the holy Lalish temple in the Mountains of Shikhan near Dahuk, 260 miles (430 kilometers) northwest of Baghdad Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. President Barack Obama authorized the airstrikes to protect U.S. interests and personnel in the region, including at facilities in Irbil, as well as Yazidi refugees fleeing militants. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Displaced Iraqis from the Yazidi community settle near the holy Lalish temple in the Mountains of Shikhan near Dahuk, 260 miles (430 kilometers) northwest of Baghdad Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. President Barack Obama authorized the airstrikes to protect U.S. interests and personnel in the region, including at facilities in Irbil, as well as Yazidi refugees fleeing militants. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Kurdish Peshmerga fighters take cover during airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)
Kurdish Peshmerga fighters react during airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)
Kurdish Peshmerga fighters take cover during airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Smoke rises after airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Kurdish Peshmerga fighters stand guard as smoke rises after airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Kurdish Peshmerga fighters stand guard during airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants at the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Kurdish Peshmerga fighters stand guard during airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants at the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Kurdish Peshmerga fighters detain a man suspected as a militant for the Islamic State group, as airstrikes target militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. The Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq.(AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)
Kurdish Peshmerga fighters stand guard during airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants at the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Kurdish Peshmerga fighters stand guard during airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants at the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq. (AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
Smoke rises from airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. The Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq.(AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)
This image made from AP video shows smoke rising from airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. The Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq.(AP Photo via AP video)
Smoke rises from airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq.(AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)
An armored vehicle belonging to Kurdish Peshmerga fighters rushes to a bombing site as smoke rises after airstrikes targeting Islamic State militants near the Khazer checkpoint outside of the city of Irbil in northern Iraq, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. The Iraqi Air Force has been carrying out strikes against the militants, and for the first time on Friday, U.S. war planes have directly targeted the extremist Islamic State group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq.(AP Photo/ Khalid Mohammed)
President Barack Obama approaches the podium to speak about the situation in Iraq in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. Obama says he has authorized the U.S. military to launch targeted airstrikes if Islamic militants advance toward American personnel in northern Iraq. He also has announced that the military carried out airdrops of humanitarian aid Thursday to Iraqi religious minorities threatened by the extremists. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
President Barack Obama arrives to speak about the situation in Iraq in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. Obama says he has authorized the U.S. military to launch targeted airstrikes if Islamic militants advance toward American personnel in northern Iraq. He also has announced that the military carried out airdrops of humanitarian aid Thursday to Iraqi religious minorities threatened by the extremists. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
President Barack Obama speaks about the situation in Iraq in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. Obama says he has authorized the U.S. military to launch targeted airstrikes if Islamic militants advance toward American personnel in northern Iraq. He also has announced that the military carried out airdrops of humanitarian aid Thursday to Iraqi religious minorities threatened by the extremists.(AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
President Barack Obama speaks about the situation in Iraq in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. Obama says he has authorized the U.S. military to launch targeted airstrikes if Islamic militants advance toward American personnel in northern Iraq. He also has announced that the military carried out airdrops of humanitarian aid Thursday to Iraqi religious minorities threatened by the extremists.(AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
President Barack Obama speaks about the situation in Iraq in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. Obama says he's authorized the U.S. military to carry out airstrikes in Iraq against Islamic militants if they advance toward the city of Erbil. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
President Barack Obama leaves the podium after speaking about the situation in Iraq in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. Obama says he's authorized the U.S. military to carry out airstrikes in Iraq against Islamic militants if they advance toward the city of Erbil.(AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
President Barack Obama speaks about the situation in Iraq in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. Obama says he's authorized the U.S. military to carry out airstrikes in Iraq against Islamic militants if they advance toward the city of Erbil. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Civilians inspect damages the morning after a string of car bombs tore through busy shopping streets in several neighborhoods in Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. At least 50 people were killed on Wednesday as the army announced that one of its airstrikes had killed tens of militants in the northern city of Mosul. (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
In this Saturday, Aug. 9, 2014 photo, a Palestinian boy walks amid the rubble of the Al-Qassam Mosque that was hit by an Israeli airstrike, in the Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip. Israel has hit and destroyed 63 mosques in Gaza in its month-old war with Hamas, Palestinian officials say. The reason, Israel says, is that Hamas is using mosques to stockpile weapons and rocket launchers and hide tunnels. Gaza’s Hamas rulers deny the accusations. But in its determination to go after what it says are militant arsenals, Israel is throwing aside any reluctance it had in the past to hit religious sites for fear of a diplomatic backlash. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Iraqi civilians gather the morning after a string of car bombs tore through busy shopping streets in several neighborhoods in Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. At least 50 people were killed as the army announced that one of its airstrikes had killed tens of militants in the northern city of Mosul. (AP Photo/Karim Kadim)
An Iraqi retrieves items from a destroyed shop the morning after a string of car bombs tore through busy shopping streets in several neighborhoods in Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. At least 50 people were killed on Wednesday as the army announced that one of its airstrikes had killed tens of militants in the northern city of Mosul. (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
Civilians inspect damages the morning after a string of car bombs tore through busy shopping streets in several neighborhoods in Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. At least 50 people were killed on Wednesday as the army announced that one of its airstrikes had killed tens of militants in the northern city of Mosul. (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
Civilians inspect damages the morning after a string of car bombs tore through busy shopping streets in several neighborhoods in Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. At least 50 people were killed on Wednesday as the army announced that one of its airstrikes had killed tens of militants in the northern city of Mosul. (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
An Iraqi man salvages what he can from his destroyed shop the morning after a string of car bombs tore through busy shopping streets in several neighborhoods in Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. At least 50 people were killed on Wednesday as the army announced that one of its airstrikes had killed tens of militants in the northern city of Mosul. (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
Iraqi municipality workers clean streets the morning after a string of car bombs tore through busy shopping streets in several neighborhoods in Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014. At least 50 people were killed on Wednesday as the army announced that one of its airstrikes had killed tens of militants in the northern city of Mosul. (AP Photo/Karim Kadim)
Iraqis drive their vehicles past damaged buildings in the aftermath of a Saturday, June 28 Iraqi government airstrike in the northern city of Mosul, Iraq, Sunday, June 29, 2014. The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant which already controls vast swaths in northern and eastern Syria amid the chaos of that nation's civil war, aims to erase the borders of the modern Middle East and impose its strict brand of Shariah law. (AP Photo)
In this photo taken Tuesday, June 24, 2014, plain-clothed Iraqi security forces members line up to enter al-Nakeeb mosque to declare "repentance" after al-Qaida-inspired insurgents ordered them to do so if they wish not to be killed in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul. Two weeks has passed since the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant took over the country's second largest city. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry warned Mideast nations on Wednesday against taking new military action in Iraq that might heighten already-tense sectarian divisions, as reports surfaced that Syria launched airstrikes across the border and Iran has been flying surveillance drones over the neighboring country. (AP Photo)
ALEPPO, SYRIA - JUNE 04: Syrians inspect a building collapsed in an air strike by forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad in the opposition controlled Al-Ansari neighborhood of Aleppo, Syria on June 04, 2014. More than 100,000 people have been killed during the ongoing three-year conflict in Syria, which has also internally displaced more than 6.5 million people, according to the U.N. Over two million Syrians are now registered as refugees in neighboring Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq. (Photo by Salih Mahmud Leyla/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
FILE - In this Sept. 5, 2014, file photo U.S. President Barack Obama looks around during a flypast at the NATO summit in Newport, Wales. Obama will begin this week to lay out a strategy to defeat Islamic State militants in the Middle East, starting with a White House meeting with bipartisan congressional leaders on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014 and a speech on Wednesday, the eve of the 13th anniversary of the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil. (AP Photo/Jon Super, File)
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(Reuters) - Islamic State militants have killed at least 500 members of Iraq's Yazidi minority, burying some alive and taking hundreds of women as slaves, an Iraqi government minister told Reuters on Sunday.

Human rights minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani accused the Sunni Muslim insurgents - who have ordered the community they regard as "devil worshippers" to convert to Islam or die - of celebrating a "a vicious atrocity" with cheers and weapons waved in the air. No independent confirmation was available.

Islamic State's advance through northern Iraq has forced tens of thousands to flee, threatened the capital of the Kurdish autonomous region and provoked the first U.S. air strikes in the area since Washington withdrew troops from Iraq in late 2011.

Sudani said in a telephone interview that news of the killings had come from people who had escaped town of Sinjar, an ancient home of the Yazidis, a Kurdish-speaking community whose religion has set them apart from Muslims and other faiths.

"We have striking evidence obtained from Yazidis fleeing Sinjar and some who escaped death, and also crime scene images that show indisputably that the gangs of the Islamic State have executed at least 500 Yazidis after seizing Sinjar," he said

"Some of the victims, including women and children were buried alive in scattered mass graves in and around Sinjar."

President Barack Obama said on Saturday that U.S. air strikes had destroyed arms that the Islamic State, which has captured swathes of northern Iraq since June, could have used against the Iraqi Kurds. However, he warned that there was no quick fix for the crisis that threatens to tear Iraq apart.

Kurdish regional president Masoud Barzani urged his allies to send arms to help his forces hold off the militants, who have bases across the Syrian border. During a visit by French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, Barzani said: "We are not fighting a terrorist organization, we are fighting a terrorist state."

In comments likely to put pressure on Washington to step up its response to Islamic State, Iraqi rights minister Sudani said: "The terrorist Islamic State has also taken at least 300 Yazidi women as slaves and locked some of them inside a police station in Sinjar and transferred others to the town of Tal Afar. We are afraid they will take them outside the country.

"In some of the images we have obtained there are lines of dead Yazidis who have been shot in the head while the Islamic State fighters cheer and wave their weapons over the corpses," he added. "This is a vicious atrocity."

A deadline passed at midday on Sunday for 300 families from the Yazidi community - followers of a religion influenced by the Zoroastrianism of ancient Persia - to convert to Islam or die. It was not immediately clear if the victims to whom the minister referred were from that group of families.

U.S. military aircraft have dropped relief supplies to tens of thousands of Yazidis who have collected on the desert top of nearby Mount Sinjar, seeking shelter from the insurgents.

At the Vatican, Pope Francis held a silent prayer for victims of the Iraqi conflict, who include members of the Christian minority, during his weekly address on Sunday.

"Thousands of people, among them many Christians, banished brutally from their houses, children dying of hunger and thirst as they flee, women kidnapped, people massacred, violence of all kinds," he said.

"All of this deeply offends God and deeply offends humanity."

MALIKI CRITICISM

Speaking before U.S. warplanes struck militant targets for a second day on Saturday, Obama said it would take more than bombs to restore stability, and criticized Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's Shi'ite-led government for failing to share power with Iraq's Sunni minority, which dominated before the U.S. invasion.

France joined the calls for Iraq's feuding leaders to form an inclusive government capable of countering the militants. "Iraq is in need of a broad unity government, and all Iraqis should feel that they are represented in this government," Foreign Minister Fabius said.

"All Iraqis should feel they are represented to take part in this battle against terrorism," he told a news conference with his Iraqi counterpart in Baghdad.

Maliki's critics say his sectarian agenda has prompted heavily armed Sunni tribes to join the insurgency. But Maliki, serving in a caretaker capacity since an inconclusive election in April, has defied calls by Sunnis, Kurds, fellow Shi'ites, regional power broker Iran and Iraq's top cleric to step aside for a less divisive leader.

The pressure from France came a day after Obama described the upheaval in the north as a "wake-up call" to Iraqis who have slipped back into sectarian bloodshed not seen since a civil war peaked in 2006-2007.

Nearly every day police report kidnappings, bombings and execution-style killings in many cities, towns and villages.

The Islamic State, which sees Shi'ites as infidels who deserve to be killed, has met little resistance. Thousands of U.S.-trained Iraqi soldiers fled when its Arab and foreign fighters swept through northern Iraq from eastern Syria in June.

The collapse of the Iraqi army prompted Kurds and Shi'ite militias to step in, with limited success.

The Sunni militants routed Kurds in their latest advance with tanks, artillery, mortars and vehicles seized from fleeing Iraqi troops, calling into question the Kurds' reputation as fearsome warriors.

A former head of German intelligence echoed the Kurdish plea for arms: "The Kurds are hopelessly outgunned," August Hanning told the Bild am Sonntag newspaper.

Iranian-trained Shi'ite militias may stand a better chance than the Kurds but they are accused of kidnapping and killing Sunnis, playing into the hands of the Islamic State, which also controls a large chunk of western Iraq.

After hammering Kurdish forces last week, the militants are just 30 minutes' drive from Arbil, the Iraqi Kurdish capital, which until now has been spared the sectarian bloodshed that has scarred other parts of Iraq for a decade.

The possibility of an attack on Arbil has prompted foreigners working for oil companies to leave the city and Kurds to stock up on AK-47 assault rifles at the arms bazaar.

In their latest sweep through the north, the Sunni insurgents routed Kurdish forces and seized a fifth oil field, several more villages and the biggest dam in Iraq - which could give them the ability to flood cities or cut off water and power supplies - hoisting their black flags up along the way.

After spending more than $2 trillion on its war in Iraq and losing thousands of soldiers, the United States must now find ways to tackle a group that is even more hardline than al-Qaeda and has threatened to march on Baghdad.

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