The Islamic State terrorist group has abducted scores of Syrian Christian families in what has been deemed the terrorist organization's biggest military advance since it conquered the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra in May.
According to the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, IS captured the town of al-Qaryatain in the Homs district of western Syria on Thursday and took numerous Christian families hostage. The militants began their attack on the town after jihadi suicide bombers took out checkpoints at the entrance of the city.
After a night of battle with Assad regime fighters, IS took control of the town which was once a destination for many Christians and religious minorities to flee to after the militants took over the city of Aleppo. more >>
Some of the most influential Christian leaders in the Middle East convened in Syria in late July to urge world leaders to support the persecuted Christian community, crying out for help to remain in the land "watered by the sweat of our fathers."
The meeting in the Old City of Damascus was attended by the five patriarchs of the oldest Christian churches in the Arab world including the Antiochian Greek Catholic Church, the Syriac Orthodox Church, the Melkite Greek Catholic Church, the Syriac Catholic Church, and the Maronite Church. The Vatican's ambassador to Syria also attended.
"We call on everyone who claims to have an interest in our fate to help us to remain," said the Mid East church leaders in a joint statement released from Syria's capital. more >>
Twelve of the 28 Iraqi Christians who fled Islamic State violence and were detained at the Mexican border while trying to enter the U.S., will face deportation after being held for months at a San Diego detention center.
Lauren Mack, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Public Affairs Officer, responded with an official statement to The Christian Post on Thursday confirming that there were currently 28 Iraqi nationals in custody at the Otay Detention Facility in San Diego. "One of those individuals was criminally charged last week in a federal court with providing false information on an immigration application. Twelve others in the group have now been ordered removed by an immigration judge."
But Mark Arabo, spokesman for the local Chaldean Christian community in San Diego and for the Minority Humanitarian Foundation, is upset by the U.S. government's decision to refuse refuge for the Iraqi Christians escaping the Islamic State, and said in a recent press statement, "These Christians have escaped slavery and death from Islamic State only to be imprisoned. The symbol for America is the Statue of Liberty. It's not a gated fence." more >>
A Christian tourist visiting the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem was attacked by a Muslim mob on Tuesday and escorted away from the area by police.
A video released earlier this week shows the tourist being escorted away by Israeli officials while a group of Muslims, including children, are screaming out "Allahu Akbar."
The tourist, who was described by Israeli authorities as a French man, sustained some minor head injuries and could face charges of disrupting public order for waving an Israeli flag while visiting the holy site. more >>
A recent poll of Americans indicates that support for the United States' decision to use the atomic bomb on Hiroshima during World War II is in decline.
The results of a Pew Research Center study released days before Thursday's 70th anniversary of the drop of the bomb indicate that American support for the decision has declined over the decades.
Pew examined a 1945 Gallup poll which found 85 percent of American respondents believed President Harry S. Truman's decision to drop the bomb was justified. In 1991, a Detroit Free Press poll found that 65 percent of Americans and 29 percent of Japanese respondents felt the bomb drop was justified. more >>
A United Nations official has confirmed the existence of an Islamic State sex slave price list that is distributed in Iraq and Syria to regulate how much enslaved women and children are sold for in the caliphate's slave markets.
United Nations special envoy on sexual violence in conflict, Zainab Bangura, recently told Bloomberg that while she was visiting Iraq last spring, she obtained a copy of an IS, also known as ISIS or ISIL, pamphlet that lists the varying prices for the different age ranges of enslaved women and children.
According to the list, which Bangura deemed authentically produced by IS and representative of real transactions, small children fetch the most money, with little girls being sold for as much as $165. more >>