Friday, February 28, 2014

Syrian Christians sign treaty of submission to Islamists
Threatened by al-Qaeda-affiliated extremists, community in northern city of Raqqa chooses 'dhimmitude' over conversion or death

February 27, 2014

Christian leaders in the northern Syrian city of Raqqa, captured by an organization formerly affiliated with al-Qaeda, have signed a submission document this week banning them from practicing Christianity in public in return for protection by their Islamist rulers.

The document, dated Sunday and disseminated through Islamist Twitter accounts, states that the Christian community in the province of Raqqa, captured last March by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), was recently given three options: to convert to Islam; to remain Christian but pledge submission to Islam; or to "face the sword." They opted for the second of those choices, known as dhimmitude.

Earlier this month, al-Qaeda's central command distanced itself from ISIS, saying it was "not a branch of al-Qaeda."

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