France Grants Asylum to Iraqi Christians
Ever since ISIS tore through the northern portion of Iraq, the historic Christian community that called the area home for decades was forced out in a mass exodus due to an ultimatum issued by the organization to either leave, pay a tax or die.
This threat was certainly not empty, as ISIS went on to destroy multiple Christian holy sites in the area. The hate and vitriol coming from the militant Islamic organization has drawn the ire of the international community both within and outside the Middle East. Outside countries and organizations have been helping out on the ground, but a recent move by France has demonstrated their commitment to those who have fled the area by offering asylum to Iraqi Christians on French soil.
A recent joint statement released by Laurent Fabius and Bernard Cazeneuve, the foreign and interior ministers respectively, indicated their condemnation of ISIS and their maneuvers in the strongest terms possible.
“The ultimatum given to these communities in Mosul by ISIL is the latest tragic example of the terrible threat that jihadist groups in Iraq…pose to these populations that are historically an integral part of this region,” they articulated. “We are ready, if they wish, to facilitate their asylum on our soil.”
This statement demonstrated France’s increased solidarity, as the opposition party echoed these sentiments in support of the Iraqi Christians.
The recent situation in Mosul has gotten increasingly worse, and has only been amplified by the inaction of Iraqi military and government. The U.N. Security Council has already condemned the persecution of Iraqi Christians by ISIS.
Efforts from the Security Council, when combined with this recent move from France, have demonstrated an incredibly strong international solidarity against the militant Islamist organization. While significant efforts have been launched to help those in need of humanitarian assistance, ISIS still remains entrenched in the area.
– Andre Gobbo
Sources: Al Jazeera, BBC, Reuters, The Borgen Project