Lawyers from the State Department are removing the word “genocide” in speeches and documents describing the persecution of Chrisitians, Yazidis and other minorities in Iraq and Syria, charged The Washington Free Beacon in an exclusive report.
The news outlet sites human rights activist and attorneys familiar with the State Deparment’s policies as the sources for their report.
Nina Shea, an international human rights lawyer and director of the Hudson Institute’s Center for Religious Freedom, named Richard Visek, an Obama appointee, as responsible for the policy. Visek is head of the State Department’s Office of Legal Adviser.
In March 2016, then Secretary of State John Kerry announced that Islamic State (ISIS/Daesh in Arabic) was responsible for the mass slaughter of Christians, Yazidis and other ethnic groups.
“Daesh is responsible for genocide against groups in areas under its control, including Yazidis, Christians, and Shia Muslims,” Kerry said at the time. “Daesh is genocidal by self proclamation, by ideology and by actions, by what it says, what it believes and what it does.”
Designating the slaughter as genocide helps direct relief funds to these beleaguered peoples as well as potentially singling them out for preferential immigration.
During the Obama era, of the 10,000 immigrants admitted from warn-torn Syria in fiscal 2016 (1,000 above the quota), only 56 non-Muslims were allowed entry.
In the course of a trial concerning a related issue, a federal judge chastised the Obama administration for this policy, “To date, there has not been a good explanation for this perplexing discrepancy,” wrote Judge Daniel Manion.
“I don’t think for a minute it’s a bureaucratic decision—it’s ideological,” said Shea, who also served on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (CIRF) from 1999 to 2012.