ISIS Militants Ravage Oldest Christian Cemetery in Mosul, Desecrating Graves to 'Eradicate Pagan Symbols'

ISIS militants have been desecrating Christian graves and destroying entire cemeteries in Mosul, recording their actions on video, which they say are part of their efforts to "eradicate pagan symbols."

Images of jihadists tearing down tombstones were spread through the terror group's social media websites, and have been republished by sites such as Iraqi News.

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Fides News Agency reported that one of the destroyed cemeteries was located at the Syrian Orthodox Cathedral, dedicated to St. Thomas the Apostle, which housed tombs of Christian soldiers who died during the Iraq-Iran war of the 1980s.

Cemeteries were also destroyed last week in Galilee in the village of Kufr Maronite Bir'im, with the Council of the Catholic Churches of the Holy Land condemning the devastation.

"The April 16 destruction of Christian graves in Mosul, Iraq, by the Islamic State is part of the organization's ongoing campaign against Christianity, in the Middle East and throughout the Muslim world," said Steven Stalinsky, executive director of The Middle East Media Research Institute.

Stalinsky told Fox News that ISIS is sending a strong signal to the West with these attacks.

"It is important to note that ISIS is documenting its destruction and desecration of Christian sites and its attacks on Christian communities, and on other minorities' sites and communities, and is disseminating these images worldwide via social media," he said.

"By doing this, ISIS is not only showcasing what it is doing, but is also mocking the West by demonstrating that it is doing so freely, with no one trying to stop it."

ISIS has made Christianity one of its prime targets in its campaign to establish an Islamic Caliphate in the region.

It has killed Christians on a number of occasions on video, including one released on Sunday that documented the execution of 30 Ethiopian Christians in Libya.

ISIS has also been destroying Christian churches, statues, and crosses across Iraq. The terror group has sought to destroy Christian symbols, which it perceives as polytheistic and idolatrous, going against its implementation of Sharia Law.

Stalinsky said in another article back in March: "They don't care what it's called; they are just following their ideology and that means getting rid of churches and minorities. It is the Islamic State, and there's no room for anyone else."

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