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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

7/21/2014 (11 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Lethal incident points to Islamic group's stranglehold over region

Al-Qaeda-breakaway group, the Islamic State, has now stoned a woman to death for adultery in Syria. It was the first such execution carried out in the region, and depicts the stranglehold this radical group now has over the region of northern Syria.

Many fear that the recent stoning incident proves that ISIS will impose a brutal regime over the areas they seize.

Many fear that the recent stoning incident proves that ISIS will impose a brutal regime over the areas they seize.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/21/2014 (11 months ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: ISIS, Syria, stoning, adultery raqqa


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The lethal incident was reported by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The stoning took place in a public square last week in the town of Tabaqa, Raqqa province. The woman was reportedly tried in an Islamic sharia law court. Witnesses to her alleged offense were never identified and that the man involved was not charged with any crime.

"Mystery surrounds the whole thing," Abu Khalil, an activist in Raqqa says. Khalil runs the anti-Islamic State group Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently. The group has obtained a cell phone photograph that purports to depict the incident.

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The U.S. Embassy in Syria - which no longer has a presence in the country - condemned the "barbaric" stoning "in the strongest possible terms."

The stoning has heightened fears that the hardline group will govern brutally and without accountability across Syria and Iraq. Sunni forces have taken over large swathes of the northern and western Syria in a lightning offensive last month.

Raqqa, where the Islamic State established its de facto capital last year, is widely considered a glimpse of what's to come in other regions that have fallen under IS control.

Raqqans were at first receptive to Islamic State rule when the group first swept into the province, unaware of its reputation for brutality that even Al-Qaeda has criticized.

After working alongside secular and Islamist rebel factions to wrest control of Raqqa from the Syrian regime, the Islamic State fended off rival factions and began to impose its radical brand of Islamic law, setting off mass protests. Raqqans are currently powerless to expel their extremist rulers.

The group's leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has already declared the region to be a restored 7th century-style caliphate that will ultimately stretch across the region.

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