The #BurnIsisFlagChallenge is going viral

Pictures of Lebanese activists burning the flag used by Islamic State (Isis) militants have sparked a hashtag campaign against Isis which follows a similar format to the ice bucket challenge.

The hashtags #BurnISISFlagChallenge or #BurnISIS have been circulating across social media after pictures of three boys burning a flag in Beirut’s Sassine Square emerged on Saturday.

The burning is understood to be in response to the beheading of a Lebanese officer by Islamic militants. Pictures of the incident were posted online on 28 August.

Tweets containing the hashtags have been posted on Twitter but pictures of people actually burning flags have been slow to emerge. Charlie Cooper of the Quilliam Foundation said this may be because of the declaration of faith Isis have used on their flag.

He told The Independent: “When someone converts to become a Muslim they will say: 'there is no god but God, Muhammad is the messenger of God', and those are the principle beliefs from which everything emanates.

“Because of this, burning it is very controversial and could present theological issues for devout Muslims who reject the Islamic State.”