WASHINGTON (March 18, 2015) — On Thursday, Family Research Council and the Syriac National Council of Syria held a joint news conference to bring awareness and help to Syrian Christians who have been suffering under the brutality of the Islamic State. Syrian Christians in the northeastern province of al Hassakeh have been combatting an an overwhelming assault by Islamic State fighters that began on February 23.
Here are some recent developments:
- IS has already kidnapped almost 300 people from a string of small villages; 30 young women have been declared “sex slaves.”
- Many Christians have died trying to defend their territory, including 19 executed by ISIS from the kidnapped group.
- Tens of thousands face the same or worse atrocities if IS succeeds in its goal of taking over the entire province.
Family Research Council President Tony Perkins gave the following statement on the need for religious liberty to be recognized internationally, especially in Syria:
“Religious liberty, including the freedom to practice one’s faith in both public and private life, is a fundamental, inherent, and international human right. It is not merely an American right. We as a nation need to prioritize this fundamental international human right to freedom of religion and give it the attention it deserves, especially in light of the horrific religious persecution against Christians and other religious minorities we see unfolding in the Islamic State,” Perkins concluded.
WHO: Bassam Ishak, President of the Syriac National Council of Syria
Robert Ozgun, Head of Foreign Affairs, Syriac American Association
Lauren Homer, President Law and Liberty Trust and co-founder of Christian Coalition for Syria
Tony Perkins, Family Research Council President
Travis Weber, Family Research Council’s Director of the Center for Religious Liberty
Watch the press conference: