U.S. says to cooperate with investigations into genocide by Islamic State

Islamic State militants lead what are said to be Ethiopian Christians along a beach in Wilayat Barqa, in this still image from an undated video made available on a social media website on April 19, 2015. REUTERS/Social Media Website via Reuters TV

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States will cooperate with independent efforts to investigate acts of genocide committed by Islamic State and do all it can to bring perpetrators to justice, the White House said on Thursday.

The finding announced earlier on Thursday by Secretary of State John Kerry that the militant group has committed genocide against minority Christians, Yazidis and Shi’ite Muslims “reflects the gravity of the situation,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest said at a news briefing.

He said the atrocities committed by the Sunni Muslim group in Syria and Iraq are troubling and “an affront to every person of faith.”

Reporting by Timothy Gardner; Writing by Washington Newsroom; Editing by Richard Chang