Islamic State released a video on Sunday showing what is believed to be the execution of about 30 Ethiopian Christians in Libya.
The 29-minute-long footage, in which the militants call Christians ‘crusaders’ who are out to kill Muslims, shows one group of men being beheaded on a beach and a second group in shrubland being shot in the head. Mideast Christian News says it has identified the locations as the coast of Cyrenaica on the Mediterranean Sea, and the centre of Fezzan.
Subtitles refer to the men as ‘worshippers of the cross belonging to the hostile Ethiopian church’. Ethiopia has not verified whether the men shown were its citizens. A government spokesman said: ‘Nonetheless, the Ethiopian government condemns the atrocious act’.
A February video showed Islamic State killing 20 Coptic Christians from Egypt and one Ghanaian. The Head of the Coptic Church in the UK today said: ‘The Christians of Egypt and Ethiopia have had a shared heritage for centuries. Being predominantly Orthodox Christian communities with a mutual understanding of life and witness, and a common origin in the Coptic Orthodox Church, they now also share an even greater connection through the blood of these contemporary martyrs’.