Islamic State militants reportedly have burned to death 45 people in the western Iraqi town of al-Baghdadi on Tuesday, just five miles away from an air base staffed by hundreds of U.S. Marines, Fox News reports.
The identities of the victims are not clear, the local police chief told the BBC, but some are believed to be among the security forces that have been clashing with ISIS for control of the town. ISIS fighters reportedly captured most of the town last week.
Col. Qasim Obeidi, pleading for help from the Iraqi government and international community, said a compound that houses families of security personnel and officials is now under siege.
The reports come days after ISIS released a video purportedly showing the beheadings of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians along a beach in Libya, sparking an international outcry, including commendation from Pope Francis, who called the killings “barbaric.”
Meanwhile, Franklin Graham called out President Obama’s denial of Islamic terrorism. He posted the following on Facebook:
After a weekend of terrorism in Libya and Denmark, beginning today the White House is hosting a three-day “Summit on Countering Violent Extremism.” I am perplexed as to why our President will not acknowledge the truth and call Islamic extremism what it is. In a statement the White House even called the 21 Christians who were beheaded “Egyptian citizens,” refusing to identify them as Christians. The truth is–their barbaric murderers openly said they killed them because they were “people of the cross.” Why is the President seemingly continuing to protect Islam and refusing to open his eyes to the truth?