Thousands of Christians are fleeing northern Iraq, after the Islamic State issued an ultimatum to convert, pay new taxes or face execution.
The IS stronghold of Mosul is “now empty of hristians,” Christian community leader Louis Sako has stated, according to AFP.
Sako stated close to 25,000 Christians were living in the northern city on Thursday.
“Christian families are on their way to Dohuk and Arbil,” Sako stated, referring to two settlements in Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region.
IS and its allies have already staged mass executions of Iraqi government security forces, and have been accused of a slew of human rights abuses by both the United Nations and human rights monitors.
Christians leaving IS controlled areas have been stripped of valuables by militants, according to witnesses spoken to by AFP.
A deadline imposed by IS for Christians to either pay up, convert or flee passed this morning.