Islamist extremists are waging a religious persecution so severe that, as Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill stated in their historic joint statement last week, "whole families, villages and cities of our brothers and sisters in Christ are being completely exterminated." Nowhere does this obtain more than in Iraq and Syria, where Christian communities, a groundswell of prominent voices is now acknowledging, face genocide.
On February 4, the European Parliament, with near-unanimity and solid socialist support, passed a resolution declaring that ISIS "is committing genocide against Christians and Yazidis" and "other religious and ethnic minorities."
Despite a foreign-policy mandate to speak out against religious persecution, the United States government has so far been silent on whether this epic religious cleansing of Christians, Yazidis, and other minorities from the heart of the Middle East ranks among the gravest of crimes. more >>
Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump said on Thursday that he would defund America's largest abortion provider if given an opportunity as the next president of the United States.
In an interview with David Brody from the Christian Broadcasting Network, Trump, who has been often attacked by the campaign of Texas Sen. Ted Cruz for being "pro-choice," assured conservative voters that he would defund Planned Parenthood if presented with the opportunity.
Trump has been back and forth on the issue of whether Planned Parenthood should be defunded. Last Summer, he first said he supported funding, then changed his position. Then he said he was "unsure" if he would support a government shutdown over Planned Parenthood funding. more >>
A disabled Christian man sentenced to death in Pakistan has claimed that he was forced into admitting blasphemy charges in order to save his wife, who was being tortured by police.
"There is no man who can stand to see his wife being tortured by police, so to save my wife, I confessed," Shafqat Emmanuel said in his appeal, according to Mail Online.
More civilians were killed in Syria last month at the hands of the Russian military than at the hands of either the Islamic State terrorist group or the regime of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad, a leading human rights group calculates.
According to a new report released by the Syrian Network for Human Rights, there were at least 1,382 civilians in Syria that were killed in January as a result of ongoing conflicts in the nation.
At least 679 civilians were killed as a result of Russian air strikes, including 73 women and 94 children. more >>
A new report by UNICEF and International Alert, a peace-building group, has warned that freed Nigerian women that had previously been captured by Boko Haram are being rejected by their communities, alongside their children, due to social stigma.
"As they return, many face marginalisation, discrimination and rejection by family and community members due to social and cultural norms related to sexual violence," the 28-page report reads, talking about the freed women.
"There is also the growing fear that some of these girls and women were radicalised in captivity. The children who have been born of sexual violence are at an even greater risk of rejection, abandonment and violence." more >>
The American Center for Law and Justice has sent legal documents to the United Nations calling for an end to the grotesque practice in Afghanistan where grown men force young boys to dress up like women, before raping and sexually abusing them.
The conservative law group said that the "bacha bazi" practice, which translates to "boy play," has been present for centuries in Afghanistan, and reports have said that it is still being used in the war-torn country.
"Perpetrators span all facets of society, including high-ranking officials in the government and security forces, and are allowed to systematically rape and traffic young boys with virtual impunity," the ACLJ said. more >>