Millions have been displaced and slaughtered. Christians and other religious minorities have been decimated in the cradle of Christianity, in the region where the Islamic State’s (ISIS) reign of terror brings brutality and genocide.
More than 283,000 of you have spoken out and signed our petition. Our global advocacy has led to the U.S. State Department, European Parliament, and other entities around the world to formally recognize the ISIS genocide against Christians and other religious minorities.
But that’s not enough. We must act.
That’s the core message in our first letter delivered to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson today.
It is indisputable that the actions of ISIS constitute genocide for purposes of implicating the obligations of the international community pursuant to the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide and the well-established responsibility to protect the victims of genocide.
Last year, your predecessor, Secretary John Kerry, publically declared that ISIS was committing genocide against Christians, Yazidis and other religious and ethnic minorities. This was an encouraging and necessary first step toward stopping ISIS and bringing justice to its victims. Unfortunately, Secretary Kerry’s words never materialized into meaningful action, and the United States has remained on the sidelines as the slaughter continues.
Now that you have taken the helm of the United States Department of State, we are encouraged that words will yield action.
The ACLJ has developed a seven-point strategic action plan to stop ISIS Genocide against Christians and protect religious minorities. We shared our strategy with Secretary Tillerson, specifically focusing on action items the State Department can promote.
We urge the State Department to issue a formal determination that lays out a strategic process by which the United States will act to help end the ISIS genocide. Specifically, it is vital that the State Department urge the United Nations to recognize the ISIS genocide and use all available options to halt it and protect the victims—including the implementation of appropriate penal tribunals whether through Security Council referral to the International Criminal Court or the establishment of ad hoc tribunals and providing meaningful in-region protection for victims, such as the establishment of safe-zones. The Charter of the United Nations demands no less, and through the organs of the United Nations, equipped and empowered by the Genocide Convention, the United Nations has the unique capability to end the genocide and protect the Christians and other religious and ethnic minorities victimized, thereby.
As we relayed to Secretary Tillerson, time is of the essence. The slaughter of our brothers and sisters in Syria and Iraq continues daily. The international community must be mobilized to stop ISIS’s genocide once and for all. We hope that with Secretary Tillerson leading the way, the world will finally act to protect the Christian and other religious minority victims of these atrocities.
Take action with us and sign our petition to stop the genocide and protect Christians.
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