In an interview with BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, the head of the Catholic Church in England and Wales has spoken about the threat posed by Islamic State (IS) and they way in which the conflict has changed the face of Erbil.
Having recently returned from a visit to the Kurdistan Region’s capital, Cardinal Vincent Nichols also commented on the need to counter the threat posed by IS.
“There is no way IS is going to walk away without being forced to do so,” he told Radio 4’s flagship news programme. “The IS threat has got to be pushed back territorially.”
He said he is “full of admiration” for local churches that have taken in and supported the tens of thousands of Christians displaced from cities, towns and villages taken by IS.
However, returning home is the main aim for the IDPs, one which the Cardinal sees as difficult.
“They want their villages back,” he said, before noting that the tactics employed by IS will make returning especially difficult. “We know IS – they are just destroyers – they would leave villages not only wrecked but booby trapped.”