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WARNING: The following images may be disturbing to some viewers.
The terrorist group known as ISIS has reportedly used brutal tactics in the past few months in order to claim and hold land in the Middle East, but a series of photos have been released showing the extent of how ISIS fighters punish law breakers in their controlled lands.
Among the photos are a few depicting an ISIS execution of two homosexual men by pushing them from a tall balcony. The pictures show a man being pushed onto a ledge, another of a man falling through the open air, and one of two bodies lying on the ground surrounded by pools of blood. As is evident in the pictures, these were public executions as a crowd had formed at the base of the balcony where the men were pushed.
Two blindfolded men are also showed crucified to wooden beams, while a man stands in front of them and a surrounding crowd and reads their crimes. According to the Daily Record, the men were accused of banditry. After their charges are read, two militants step up behind the crucified men and execute each with a single shot from their respective handguns.
Final, a set of images shows the execution by stoning of a woman. Her execution can be said to be less public as it appears to be taking place in a secluded, wooded area, but the brutality of her death via stoning is still on display.
Public executions have been reportedly taking place in all ISIS controlled areas since the group declared their lands the Caliphate, or Islamic State.
Charles Lister of the Brookings Institute’s Doha Center researched ISIS’ version of Sharia Law and published his findings under the title “Profiling the Islamic State.” In this research, Lister writes, “The implementation of a strict form of sharia law is clearly central to IS’s governance.” In this version of Sharia Law, serious punishments are dealt out to people who violate seemingly minute offenses such as listening to non-Islamic music or deviating from the assigned dress code implemented by ISIS.
Given ISIS’ penchant for a wide range of propaganda, these images and executions seem to serve multiple purposes. Not only are crimes being punished in these pictures, but the images may also be meant to scare people in and around ISIS controlled areas.