(Washington DC) March 16, 2016-
Today the United States Department of State delayed making a decision on whether genocide is being committed against Christians and other religious minorities in the Middle East, missing the congressionally mandated deadline of March 17th. The delay came two days after Congress passed House Con. Resolution 75 by unanimous 393-0 vote, recognizing the on-going genocide of Christians, Yazidis and other religious minorities under ISIS, and weeks after the European Parliament declared the same.
Last week the Knights of Columbus and In Defense of Christians submitted a nearly 300 page report to Secretary of State John Kerry relating irrefutable evidence of the ongoing genocide of the Christian community in Iraq and Syria under ISIS.
IDC Executive Director Kirsten Evans stated in response to the delayed designation:
“We are encouraged to know that the State Department is carefully reviewing the report and all incoming evidence, to ensure as fully an informed decision as possible.
Christians—once one of the largest religious minorities in the region—are losing their lives as the daily targets of ISIS. The images of their beheadings have been broadcast for the world to see. Hundreds of thousands of those who have survived are living as IDPs and refugees in foreign lands. Having lost everything, and with little real support from the West, they are being condemned to a future without education, without medical care, without proper shelter, without enough food, without a home. A future without hope.
The American people and global conscience implore our national leaders to not stand silent in the face of mounting international consensus. In Defense of Christians asks the Secretary of State John Kerry to speak out soon on behalf of Christians and other minorities undergoing genocide at the hands of ISIS.”