- The Washington Times - Friday, July 25, 2014

Terrorists with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant have blown up the burial place of Jonah, the reluctant prophet from Galilee whose story of being swallowed by a massive sea creature is told in the Bible.

Islam recognizes the existence of Jonah, also.

ISIL radicals ringed the tomb with explosives and detonated it at a remote location, civil defense officials who witnessed the incident told CNN. A video of the explosion was posted to YouTube, but CNN said it couldn’t yet verify its authenticity.

Jonah’s tomb had been inside the Mosque of the Prophet Younis, a Sunni-held facility.

ISIL, which is engaged in a war to reestablish a caliphate in the region, has begun imposing Sharia law in all the towns it takes over — and has vowed to destroy any shrine or religious artifact found to be noncompliant with Islam. ISIL has also destroyed several Shiite worship sites in recent weeks and driven Christians from the city of Mosul, telling them they must convert to Islam or die.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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