When news of ISIS beheading Christian children in Mosul as part of its genocide plans, it has sparked outrage from all over the world. Many people have resorted to social media to express their anger and shock. Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter were filled with netizens' reactions to the violence in Iraq. The leader of the Catholic Church was no exception.
Pope Francis has expressed his "disbelief" and outrage at the violence suffered by religious minorities in Iraq. Reports said Islamic militants, Isis, have resorted to beheading children and burying them alive including women for refusing to convert to Islam.
Children who have sought refuge from the violence have reportedly died of thirst. In his traditional Sunday blessing, Pope Francis said the news in Iraq left people in disbelief. He declared that thousands of people including Christians were brutally driven from their homes.
The pope called on the international community to address the ongoing violence and "stop these crimes." Vatican ambassador to Baghdad Cardinal Fernando is scheduled to arrive in Iraq to express support for Christians who were targeted for annihilation by Islamic militants.
Pope Francis, referring to ISIS' actions, said, "All this gravely offends God and humanity. Hatred is not to be carried in the name of God. War is not to be waged in the name of God."
According to a report by Arab News, ISIS militants have moved on from beheading to burying women and children alive in mass graves. Iraqi Human Rights Minister Mohammed Shia Al-Sudani accused ISIS of mass killings and claimed authorities have "striking evidence." He said some Yazidis have managed to escape death. The minister told the news agency that they have also obtained images of Islamic militants executing 500 Yazidis after taking over the town of Sinjar.
Al-Sudani said ISIS considers the Yazidis as "devil worshippers" and forced them to convert or be killed if they refuse. He added that some 300 women have been captured as "slaves" while others were imprisoned.
Meanwhile, majority of social media users welcomed the air strikes launched by U.S. President Barack Obama in an effort to stop the militants and save the people from persecution. Some expressed their support for the protests against the U.S. response against ISIS. Others have demanded a more long-lasting solution to the political problem.
U.S. military aircraft began dropping to supplies to Yazidis still trapped in Sinjar. However, reports said they will soon run out of supplies. Mr Obama has assured the air strikes will be "severely limited."