2010-11-10 15:17:47

Christians continue to be killed in Iraq. Appeal of Al Maliki

(November 10,2010) Christians continue to be attacked in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad. A series of attacks on Christian homes on Wednesday morning, claimed 3 victims and injured 26. The attacks with two mortars and dozens of homemade bombs, occurred in different districts of Bagdad in front of the homes of Christians. On Tuesday night in the capital, three other Christian houses were hit by bombs, without causing any victims.
Despite the attacks, Iraq’s Prime Minister al Maliki is urging Christians not to abandon the country. The latest attacks came some 10 days after the October 31 attack on the Syrian Catholic Church of Our Lady of Salvation, and after threats from Al Qaeda to eliminate Christians from the Middle East. The attack on the parish killed 44 faithful, two priests and seven security guards. About 90 people were injured. Of these, the first group of 37, to be followed by those remaining, arrived in France on Monday to receive treatment offered by the European nation, the only one to propose such support.
On Tuesday, Prime Minister al-Maliki visited the church of Our Lady of Salvation and urged his fellow Christians not to leave the country. Praising the "noble" gesture of France, al-Maliki said that "it must not be an incentive to emigrate." He recalled that in his meeting with Pope Benedict XVI in 2008, he had asked the Pope "not to allow the East be emptied of Christians, nor the West of Muslims". "We ask - he said – for an end to the emigration of Christians. We will do everything possible so that Iraq's communities remain complete and united". Al-Maliki also offered his condolences to the families of the victims.
Before the U.S. invasion in 2003, the Christian community in Iraq counted almost a million faithful, that number has now dropped below 500 thousand.

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