As Iraqi-led coalition forces fight to liberate the Iraqi city of Mosul and surrounding areas from the Islamic State, two Nineveh towns that were once home to hundreds of Christian families have finally been liberated from the barbaric death cult, according to the Archbishop of Erbil.
Speaking to The Christian Post on Friday, Chaldean Archbishop Bashar Warda said the hopes of thousands of displaced Christian families are on the rise knowing that there is finally a concentrated ground effort to reclaim and liberate their homelands from IS.
It was reported earlier this week that Iraqi-led forces, including Kurdish Peshmerga troops and Christian militia fighters, have besieged and are battling to liberate the once-largest Christian town in Iraq, Qaraqosh. Warda told CP that coalition forces have already liberated two smaller Christian villages of Bartella and Mar Oraha, which are situated just miles outside of Mosul. more >>
As conflicts in Iraq and Syria have forced millions of residents to flee their homes over the last several years, a leading Christian persecution activist has explained that over 80 percent of Christians have left Iraq in the last 13 years, while nearly half of all Christians have fled Syria since 2010.
Before the United States military went into Iraq in 2003, captured dictator Saddam Hussein, and opened up a power vacuum, Iraq was home to about 1.5 million Christians. But after sectarian violence commenced and the brutal Islamic State terrorist organization rose to power in 2014, fewer than 300,000 remain.
Meanwhile, in neighboring Syria, civil war has ravaged the country over the last five years and the rise of IS (also known as ISIS or ISIL) inside the country has compounded problems, thus creating one of the worst refugee crises in the 21st century. more >>
Jeffery Woodke, 55, the U.S. missionary who was kidnapped by armed men from his home in Niger, West Africa, on Friday after they killed his two guards, is now believed to be in the hands of a drug-trafficking jihadist group called The Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO).
"We think this is the MUJAO," Nigerien Interior Minister Mohamed Bazoum told the AFP. "We followed the kidnappers when they crossed the Malian border. They headed to the Menaka region (eastern Mali ), near the Niger border, an area controlled by the Mujao."
According to the Terrorism Research and Analysis Consortium, the MUJAO is a splinter group of the Organization of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, which formally announced its existence following its abduction of three humanitarian workers from a Saharan refugee camp in Tindouf on Oct. 23, 2011. MUJAO's leaders are known to be drug traffickers involved in the drug trade in the Sahel and southern Algeria. more >>
Pastor Robert Jeffress of First Baptist Church in Dallas, Texas, said that while Christians cannot possibly look at the Syrian civil war crisis and not feel compassion for the people, that doesn't mean the United States should accept unvettable refugees.
Jeffress said in an interview with Stuart Varney on Fox Business on Wednesday that while he believes most Muslims are peace-loving, it's also true that radical Muslims, and not Christians, are the ones carrying out terror attacks.
"No Christian, no human being can look at the situation in Syria and not feel compassion for the suffering Syrians. There are many things we can do and should do as a nation, but allowing un-vettable refugees into our country is not one of them," the megachurch pastor said on Wednesday. more >>
A Muslim cleric in Maryland, who has openly endorsed the Islamic State terror group and funded at least one Muslim convert who was arrested for buying illegal explosives, has not been charged or arrested because, according to authorities, he hasn't broken any laws.
Suleiman Anwar Bengharsa, an imam at mosques in Annapolis and outside Baltimore who also serves as a prison chaplain, has posted gruesome videos showing Islamic State fighters, also known as ISIS, ISIL or Daesh, beheading and burning alive their enemies and praised terrorist attacks overseas, The New York Times reports.
The FBI filed an affidavit in federal court saying that the 59-year-old imam gave $1,300 to a 29-year-old Muslim covert, identified as Sebastian Gregerson, in Detroit in June 2015, and the man used it to buy firearms and grenades. more >>
Several fact-checking websites are disputing the claim made by Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine that Hillary Clinton helped eliminate Iran's nuclear weapons program.
During the vice presidential debate held at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia, Kaine claimed that the Democratic presidential hopeful was integral to putting a stop to the Islamic Republic's nuclear ambitions.