Report: Pence Working to Speed Up Aid to Iraqi Christians, Yazidis

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Vice President Mike Pence (Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images)
By Greg Richter
Vice President Mike Pence is moving to speed up the process of getting aid to Iraqi Christians, Yazidis and other religious minorities being persecuted by the Islamic State, The Washington Free Beacon reports.

Pence in October vowed to bypass what he called “ineffective” U.N. aid programs, instead relying on faith-based groups and USAID.

But with the situation perilous for religious minorities in Iraq, some humanitarian groups expressed concern that USAID and the State Department might try to water down or slow President Donald Trump’s order.

Pence on Tuesday convened a White House meeting and tweeted about it afterward.

At the meeting were U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, USAID Director Mark Green, Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan and Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney.

Former Rep. Frank Wolf, who is now a senior fellow at the 21st Century Wilberforce Initiative, was at the meeting as well, and told the Free Beacon he was encouraged that the officials present appeared to be committed to quick action.

“There is a famous quotation that says, ‘Silence in the face of evil is evil itself. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act,'” Wolf said.

The quote is from German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who was executed by the Nazis for his participation in a plot to kill Hitler.

“This administration is acting on the president’s policy to direct much-needed resources and relief to Christians, Yazidis and other persecuted for their faith in the Middle East,” Wolf said.