The fourth anniversary of genocide in Iraq
International | ISIS killed and enslaved thousands, and thousands are still missing
by Mindy Belz
Posted 8/03/18, 03:57 pm
IRAQ: Friday marks the fourth anniversary of the ISIS genocide of Yazidis in Iraq. Besides the thousands ISIS killed and enslaved, thousands remain missing—and a Yazidi population of 400,000 before 2014 in Iraq has been obliterated. I write about my encounter last week with Yazidi activist and survivor Nadia Murad in the latest issue of WORLD Magazine.
- For Christians, the attacks by ISIS also found them without defenses and destroyed a way of life handed down for millennia (full story).
- Four years on, ISIS areas of Iraq are liberated mostly, but the U.S. government has not provided promised aid to ISIS survivors and their communities. A bill to also require that remains on hold in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. In October 2017, Vice President Mike Pence announced the United States would “stop funding ineffective relief efforts via the UN” in Iraq—but the money still has not reached Nineveh. Instead, churches are overseeing efforts to rebuild communities.
AUSTRIA: The U.S. government has reopened 87 cases of Iranians who applied for refugee admission but were denied en masse—but so far has not approved any for admission. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security, following a U.S. District Court order last month in Northern California, will reconsider the cases involving mostly Armenian and Assyrian Christians. “We are hopeful the government will process these applicants to travel here and practice their religion safely,” said Mariko Hirose, litigation director for the International Refugee Assistance Project.
TURKEY: U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met his Turkish counterpart in Singapore Friday to urge the release of U.S. pastor Andrew Brunson. Earlier this week, the Trump administration imposed sanctions on two top Turkish officials, saying they were directly involved in Brunson’s arrest and detention two years ago. Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., and other members of Congress who have long pressed for the stepped-up campaign, said they “applaud” the new measures.
ZIMBABWE: President Emmerson Mnangagwa claimed victory in this week’s election and called on the nation to unite behind his long-ruling ZANU-PF party. But opposition leaders vowed to contest those results following a ZANU-led crackdown on protesters that led to six deaths. “We are going to explore all necessary means, legal and constitutional, to ensure that the will of the people is protected,” said opponent Nelson Chamisa. Video footage showed police moving in to disperse journalists and restrict Chamisa in Harare.
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO: An Ebola outbreak declared over a week ago is back.
SPAIN: Authorities in Mataró arrested two Moroccan jihadists with plans to “kill all the Jews.”
VATICAN: The Roman Catholic Church has a long history of ruling that the death penalty is acceptable and consistent, if rarely used, with Scriptural teaching in certain circumstances, but Pope Francis this week changed the church’s catechism to read that capital punishment ought never to be used (rather than “very rarely”)—a dramatic change with broader consequences: “One does not need to support capital punishment to worry that Pope Francis may have gone too far.”
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