Syrian refugees in Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdistan region have condemned the rape of a Syrian teenage girl in the city of Arbil, Press TV reports.
According to the report, six men kidnapped and raped the 16-year-old Syrian refugee earlier this month when she was on her way home after work.
The attackers were said to be arrested after the incident and security officials have launched an investigation into the assault.
“We are humans too and we came here to be safe…. Something like that should not happen because this is a hateful thing,” a Syrian refugee told Press TV correspondent.
Another refugee from Syria called for the assailants to be brought to justice, saying, “We want the most severe punishment so that no one does these things again.”
Meanwhile, women’s rights activist Aisha Tahir has warned against such heinous felonies against women, saying, “Crimes like these [have] become a threat against the lives of most girls of this age.”
Activists argue that the way the Arbil rape case is dealt with and the punishment handed down will set a precedent for the future.
In December 2013, the UN warned that the number of Syrian refugees will almost double in 2014.
“There is a tragedy in the plight of the Syrian refugees,” the UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said at a meeting of donor countries in the Swiss city of Geneva on December 12, 2013.
Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since March 2011. According to the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have been killed and millions displaced due to the violence in Syria.