by Ariel Ben Solomon
February 27, 2014
Group calls for end to public Christian rituals, displaying of cross “or anything from their book anywhere on Muslims’ path or markets.”
Christians in Syria. Photo: REUTERS
The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, a jihadist group, announced on Wednesday that Christians in the Syrian city of Raqa will have to conform to Islamic Shari'a, paying taxes in return for protection.
The group released a list of 12 rules that make up an "agreement" on jihadist forums, AFP reported. Christians should not publicly make religious rituals or display the cross "or anything from their book anywhere on Muslims' path or markets," it said.
ISIL began as al-Qaida in Iraq and imposed similar rules on Christians there, following the 2003 US-led invasion, said the report.
Christians that refuse to pay would face death, said the group, the BBC reported.
Jihadist groups have taken over swaths of land in Syria as the war has dragged on, imposing Islamic law.
In classical Islamic law a dhimmi, or "protected person," is allowed to live in Muslim lands provided he pays the jizya in a state of submission and abides by other restrictions. Jews and Christians, because they are "people of the Book," are given the offer to accept dhimmi conditions.
The payment of jizya is based on the Koran (9:29): "Fight those who believe not in God and the Last Day and do not forbid what God and His messenger [Muhammad] have forbidden - such men as practice not the religion of truth, being of those who have been given the Book - until they pay the tribute out of hand and have been humbled."
Muslims are obligated to protect dhimmis, but if they breach the pact, they can be killed. Historically, the dhimmi helped fund the expansion of the Islamic empire.
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