Just last week, we reported that Secretary of State John Kerry had three days left to officially declare ISIS crimes against Christians as a genocide.
Hours before the deadline, Kerry released a statement in which he declared that ISIS is committing genocide against Christians, Yazidis, and Shiite Muslims.
Before Kerry’s statement, the House of Representatives approved a resolution by a vote of 393-0 to declare ISIS actions as genocide.
“One element of genocide is the intent to destroy an ethnic or religious group in whole or in part. Its [ISIS] entire world view is based on eliminating those who do not subscribe to its perverse ideology,” Kerry stated.
It’s unclear what this official declaration will mean for the war against ISIS. Although it is now labeled a genocide, there are no requirements by law to take action to stop a genocide once it has been labeled as such. In fact, the last time that the U.S. declared genocide was in 2004 against Darfur. The label had no effect on the U.S. refusing to take action against the Sudanese government. During his statement, Kerry did not comment on whether this declaration would lead to a policy change.