A Catholic priest has been shot and killed in northern Syria, The Telegraph has found, contradicting claims that he is the victim in a widely-circulated beheading video.
The footage, said to show Father Francois Murad, 49, as the victim in a brutal summary execution by foreign jihadists is likely to be an older video that bares no relation to the death of the Catholic priest.
Father Murad “died when he was shot inside his church” in the northern Syrian Christian village of Ghassaniyeh on June 23, three separate local sources, who did not wish to be named, told the Telegraph.
Claims that Father Murad was one of two men to be decapitated by a foreign jihadist group went viral, with outrage expressed in blogs and articles worldwide.
The footage posted on YouTube shows three men kneeling on the ground surrounded by a group of foreign jihadists, now thought to be a group of Chechen rebels. The crowd whips itself into frenzy and screaming “God is great” some of the rebels slaughter two of the prisoners.
The film is too grainy to be able to confirm the identity of either of the victims as Father Francois. While the video’s title refers to the killing of a priest and a bishop, none of the participants in the actual video refer to any such actions, and only accuse the victims of being collaborators and ‘shabiha’, a reference to pro-government militia members.
Source: The Telegraph, UK
News That Matter has covered this barbaric act in Syria. Therefor this correction.
Why does it make a difference if the Catholic priest was shot or beheaded?
Simply because the Roman Catholic Church desperately need to display its martyrs to the World. The Church do not mind “positive” false messages to be published. The Vatican has confirmed the beheading, now disputed by reliable sources.
Anyone can get shot in a civil war. But if a Catholic priest is beheaded for his faith, the papacy can produce a new “saints”.
Written by Ivar