Tags: Donald Trump | ISIS/Islamic State | chris smith | bill | christians | flee | isis

Rep. Chris Smith Proposes Bill for Christians Fleeing ISIS

Image: Rep. Chris Smith Proposes Bill for Christians Fleeing ISIS

Rep. Chris Smith (Bill Clark/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 16 Dec 2016 03:16 PM

A New Jersey congressman has set up a bill to help Christians that are fleeing Islamic State attacks in Iraq and Syria, according to The Hill.

Republican Rep. Chris Smith's bill, the Iraq and Syria Genocide Relief and Accountability Act of 2016, would grant government interviews overseas to Christians and other groups that ISIS is persecuting. That interview will be the first step to gaining asylum in the U.S., the Hill reports.

Smith told the Hill President Barack Obama has done little to address the situation.

"The president has been asleep at the switch, in my opinion," he said.

The bill would allow Christians to apply for asylum, would set up prosecution for war crimes against Christians, and designate money for relief for survivors of the genocidal attacks.

He said that vetting the religious groups is doable, because the groups contain religious leaders. "So many of these Christian communities have moved en masse, often with their clergymen, with their priests, and others certifying that they are who they say they are. Other kinds of checks and balances will be that much more achievable, because they are well-known people among their community."

The New Jersey Republican said he has spoken with Vice President-elect Mike Pence, but has not yet spoken to President-elect Donald Trump.

The congressman is also a co-sponsor of an upgrade to the Frank R. Wolf International Religious Freedom Act. The Catholic news site Crux reported that the bipartisan bill passed the House Tuesday and has been sent to Obama.

The upgrade to the law signifies countries where the abuse of religious freedom is the worst, by labeling them "countries of particular concern." The bill also calls for the creation of a list of religious prisoners around the world, the report said.

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A New Jersey congressman has set up a bill to help Christians that are fleeing Islamic State attacks in Iraq and Syria, according to The Hill.
chris smith, bill, christians, flee, isis, asylum
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2016-16-16
Friday, 16 Dec 2016 03:16 PM
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