The secretive Kaka’i of Iraq are finally speaking out

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The Kaka’i are a secretive religious minority in Iraq who usually avoid the cameras.

Their persecution has forced them to keep their beliefs and rituals a secret; once numbering in their millions in Iraq, there are now just 200,000.

They have been persecuted by extremists in the region who consider them to be infidels, such as ISIS and al-Qaeda.

The Kaka’i have also faced discrimination from the Shia Muslim-led paramilitary Popular Mobilisation force since the central government retook control of Kirkuk province from Kurdish forces in 2017.

They are finally revealing their lives to the international community in an attempt to thwart the risk of genocide.

You can hear more about their persecution by listening to the World Service’s Heart and soul programme here.

Camera: Dom Byrne

Producer: Dom Byrne and Sophia Smith Galer

‘If we stay a secret, there will be a genocide’

The secretive Kaka’i religious minority fear for their lives – and they’re finally speaking out about it

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