ISIS has ordered all remaining Christians in Mosul convert or pay a “nonbeliever” tax (jiziya)—if they refuse both, they will be killed. CNN reports:
The letters from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, were distributed to leaders of the dwindling Christian minority in the city in recent days.The message added that ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has agreed to “allow them (Christians who do not agree to convert or pay extra taxes) to evacuate themselves only from the caliphate state” by noon Saturday (5 a.m. ET). After that, the message said, “the only option is the sword.”
ISIS is not a stable political entity—not yet, anyway. But they have enough footholds in places like Mosul to further decimate the Christian population of their country. Whether they leave the Middle East in the face of worsening persecution, or stay and endure an increasing risk of violence and death, Christian communities may soon cease to be a presence in the Middle East altogether.