The Rev. Canon Andrew White, former Vicar of Baghdad, says he faces no charges after police concluded an investigation into allegations that he paid money to Islamic State to secure the release of young women held as sex slaves.
From the time the accusations surfaced, Canon White has denied paying money to secure the release of the women. He was founding director of the Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East, but resigned after being suspended when the Charity Commission launched an investigation.
After the Charity Commission began its investigation, London’s Metropolitan Police launched a criminal investigation, and Canon White was interviewed in the presence of his solicitor. This week he told The Times that the investigation is complete.
“If I was not a person of such profound, simple faith I would feel very angry but I know that anger does not really achieve anything,” Canon White told The Times. “I feel very hurt by it all, but it has not affected my faith.
“It is quite amazing. You would think that releasing sex slaves from ISIS was a good thing. But [the police] were convinced that I could only have done it by paying for them.”
Canon White said he managed to secure the release of six or seven women through connections he had developed with Sunni Muslims while he was in Iraq. He was forced to leave Iraq as ISIS insurgents continued to take territory, and he now works to support Iraqi refugees in Jordan.
Adapted from ACNS