Rep. Franks to Obama: 'How Much Longer Will You Remain Appallingly Silent' on Islamic State Genocide of Christians?

Michael W. Chapman | December 22, 2015 | 5:40pm EST
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Rep. Trent Franks.  (AP) 

( -- In a video address to President Barack Obama, House Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) reminded the president about the brutal persecution of Christians, Yazidis, and other religious groups by the Islamic State, questioned why Obama has been so "appallingly silent" on the issue, and added that Obama's refusal to name these groups as "genocide victims" would be "one of the most disgraceful chapters in your administration's shameful and abhorrent response to the Islamic State."

"Mr. President, it has now been more than a year since the Islamic State drove hundreds of thousands of Christians from the land of their spiritual heritage in Iraq and Syria," says Rep. Franks in the video, posted on his website.  "This year, the joy of Christmas will not be celebrated in the churches and places of worship that Christians have cherished there for thousands of years."

“Instead, they will observe this sacred holiday under the constant threat of being hunted down and slaughtered by terrorists simply because they’re Christians," said Franks.  "You are and have been fully aware that Christians, along with Yazidis, and other religious communities have been subjected to extreme brutality and barbaric attacks that should justly be considered and condemned as genocide."

“And yet, Mr. President, I am dumbfounded by recent reports which suggest that your administration may exclude Christians and other religious communities from the designation of genocide victims at the hands of the Islamic State," said Franks, who serves on the Armed Service Committee and the Judiciary Committee. 

“Sir, how much longer will you remain appallingly silent on the plight of persecuted Christians caught in this wake of unimaginable horror?" asks Franks.

(AP photo.) 

"Your refusal to acknowledge and specifically name Christians, along with Yazidis and other religious communities in a designation of genocide would be one of the most disgraceful chapters in your administration’s shameful and abhorrent response to the Islamic State," says the congressman.

“In the Name of God, humanity, and Christmas, Mr. President, please do not continue to stand by and let this evil relentlessly proceed," Franks concluded.

Trent Franks, 58, is married and has two children. He has served in the U.S. House of Representatives since 2003. 

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