Mobile  |  About us  |  Photos  |  Videos  |  Subscriptions  |  RSS Feeds  |  Today's Paper  |  Classifieds  |  Contact Us
The Daily Star
FRIDAY, 25 APR 2014
08:26 AM Beirut time
Weather    
Beirut
22 °C
Blom Index
BLOM
1,214.01down
Middle East
Follow this story Print RSS Feed ePaper share this
ISIS imposes restrictions on Christians in Raqqa
Reuters
This undated image posted on a militant website on Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014 shows fighters from the al-Qaida linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) marching in Raqqa, Syria.(AP Photo/militant website)
This undated image posted on a militant website on Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014 shows fighters from the al-Qaida linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) marching in Raqqa, Syria.(AP Photo/militant website)
A+ A-

BEIRUT: The Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) has demanded that Christians in the city of Raqqa pay a levy in gold and curb displays of their faith in return for protection, according to a statement posted online Wednesday.

The Al-Qaeda splinter group’s directive in the eastern city is the latest evidence of the group’s ambition to establish a state in Syria founded on radical Islamist principles, a prospect that concerns Western and Arab backers of other rebels fighting Syrian President Bashar Assad.

ISIS said it would ensure Christians’ safety in exchange for the levy and their adherence to restrictions on their faith, citing the Islamic legal precept of “dhimma.”

It said Christians must not make renovations to churches or other religious buildings, display religious insignia outside of churches, ring church bells or pray in public.

It demanded every Christian male pay a tax of up to 17 grams of gold, a levy that was common in Muslim states centuries ago.

The directive also bans Christians from owning weapons and from selling pork or wine to Muslims or drinking wine in public.

The concept of dhimma, governing non-Muslims living under Islamic rule, dates back to the seventh century but was largely abolished during the Ottoman reforms of the mid-19th century.

Raqqa was the first and only city to fall completely under rebel control last year. After repelling an offensive last month by rival Islamists and more moderate rebels, ISIS has turned its attention to setting up a state based on a radical interpretation of Shariah law.

It issued a more general set of restrictions for all residents of Raqqa last month, but this week’s notice included the most extensive restrictions yet on Christians.

The statement, dated Saturday, was posted on Twitter by a purported ISIS supporter. The text matched a statement distributed by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which condemned it.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on February 27, 2014, on page 8.
Home Middle East
 
     
 
ISIS / dhimma / Raqqa / Syria
Advertisement
Comments  

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

comments powered by Disqus
Story Summary
The Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) has demanded that Christians in the city of Raqqa pay a levy in gold and curb displays of their faith in return for protection, according to a statement posted online Wednesday.

ISIS said it would ensure Christians' safety in exchange for the levy and their adherence to restrictions on their faith, citing the Islamic legal precept of "dhimma".

It said Christians must not make renovations to churches or other religious buildings, display religious insignia outside of churches, ring church bells or pray in public.
Related Articles
 
 
African soldiers help 1,000 Muslims flee CAfrica to Chad
Entities
Advertisement


Baabda 2014
Advertisement
Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Linked In Follow us on Google+ Subscribe to our Live Feed
Multimedia
Images  
Pictures of the day
A selection of images from around the world- Thursday April 24, 2014
View all view all
Advertisement
Rami G. Khouri
Rami G. Khouri
Israel shows Zionism’s true colors
Michael Young
Michael Young
For Christians, blessed are the dividers
David Ignatius
David Ignatius
An Iran deal is close, but we’re not there yet
View all view all
Advertisement
cartoon
 
Click to View Articles
 
 
News
Business
Opinion
Sports
Culture
Technology
Entertainment
Privacy Policy | Anti-Spamming Policy | Disclaimer | Copyright Notice
© 2014 The Daily Star - All Rights Reserved - Designed and Developed By IDS