2 August, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile






mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 04/18/2007
IRAQ
Islamic group in Baghdad: “Get rid of the cross or we will burn your Churches”.
In the Dora quarter threats continue to be made against Christians. In the last two months Christian parishes have been forced to give in to extremist pressure, only the Church of Sts Peter and Paul has withstood so far. A fatwa forbids the practice of Christian ritual gestures. The US army occupies Babel College, property of the Chaldean Patriarchate.

Baghdad (AsiaNews) – “Get rid of the cross or we will burn your Churches”. This is the threat aimed at the Chaldean Church of Sts Peter and Paul, located in the ancient Christian quarter of Baghdad, Dora. Local sources say an unknown armed Islamic group is behind the threats which are inseminating terror in the capital.  The Arab website Ankawa.com and Aina news agency speak of a campaign of persecution in act in the area.  Even Mosul, a Sunni stronghold, the Christian presence is being gravely threatened.  

 

Msgr. Shlemon Warduni, Chaldean auxiliary bishop of Baghdad, tells AsiaNews “in the last 2 months many Churches have been forced to remove their crosses from their domes”.  In the case of the Church of St. George, assira, Muslim extremists took the situation into their own hands: they climbed onto the roof and ripped out the cross.  In the Chaldean Church of St John, in Dora, which has been without a pastor for months now, the parishioners themselves decided to move the cross to a safer place following repeated threats.   

 

The same threats which have arrived at the Church of Sts Peter and Paul, which has so far however withstood intimidation: the cross hasn’t been removed but the threats continue.  “The Iraqi people are tired – says Warduni – we have been suffering for far too long the situation has become unsustainable; we ask God to give us peace.  The Christians, just like the Muslims, want to rebuild Iraq, we don’t want to be forced to flee, because this is where we were born, this is where we have lived our lives”.

 

The Islamic group active in Dora seems to have delivered an ultimatum to the Christian community there: convert to Islam or die; moreover reports say that they have delivered a Fatwa forbidding Christians to wear the cross or make any religious gesture.  It also permits the confiscation of goods and properties belonging to the Christian families who find themselves forced to flee their homes for safety at short notice.

 

Baghdad’s Christian community’s worries have been added to by the US military’s decision to forcibly occupy Babel College, property of the Chaldean Church.  The Babel, the only faculty of theology in the country, houses on of the most ancient religious libraries in the region, full of priceless manuscripts.  Because of the increased insecurity in the city and continual abductions of religious the faculty had transferred to Ankawa, in Kurdistan January last, leaving the building empty. The US military are now using it as an observation outpost.  The building is located at a strategic crossroads: within a Sunni enclave, in front of a Shiite district.  Leaders from the local Church are discussing the issue with military representatives.  Apparently they have promised to abandon the structure in the coming weeks.

 


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
10/07/2008 IRAQ
Mosul, another "targeted murder" against the Christian community
05/22/2007 IRAQ
Free, but “deeply marked” the Chaldean priest kidnapped in Baghdad
03/20/2008 IRAQ
Chaldean Christians, after five years the crestfallen dream of Iraq
by Yawnan Al-Muselly*
05/24/2007 IRAQ
Iraqi government offers its “full support” to the persecuted Christians of Baghdad
01/04/2007 IRAQ
Theological university and seminary leave unsafe Baghdad and head north
IRAQ
Baghdad, the Mahdi army imposes the veil on Christian women
IRAQ
Christian leaders join in Patriach Delly’s Iraq appeal
IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch: Christians persecuted by Iraqi government and foreign troops
IRAQ
Iraq’s Chaldean bishop’s appeal to the Sharm el-Sheikh summit and the world’s Muslims
IRAQ
Iraqi leaders indifferent to 'endangered' Christians
IRAQ
Bishop of Kurdistan: “the Church in Iraq is in great danger”
IRAQ
Bishops appeal: Save Iraq’s Christians!

Editor's choices
CHINA
Unofficial catholic community of Wenzhou speak out against forced demolition of Crosses, whole diocese fasting
by Joseph YuanAfter 90-year-old Bishop Vincent Zhu Weifang of Wenzhou led 26 priests of the open Church community to protest against the government’s act to demolish Crosses, Coadjutor Bishop James Shao Zhumin of Wenzhou also led his priests to issue an open statement “Strongly demand a halt to demolish Crosses on all churches.
CHINA
Wenzhou: 90-year-old bishop and 26 priests protest against cross demolitions
by Joseph YuanThis is not the first time that the old bishop and his priests speak out against the demolition campaign against crosses and churches, which has touched more than 400 buildings. During the protest, police tried to disperse the group, which sought to submit a petition. The faithful recite a Crown of the Divine Mercy is in support of the Chinese Church. In Lishui, churches are expected to be torn down by 31 August.
ISRAEL - IRAN
After nuclear deal, Israel ought to become Iran’s best ally
by Uri AvneryThis is the thesis of Uri Avnery, leader of Gush Shalom, a major supporter of peace between Israelis and Palestinians. According to the great statesman and peace activist, Iran only wants to be a regional power in the Islamic world, able to trade with everyone, inspired by a sophisticated experience that goes back thousands of years. Iran, which faces backward-looking Gulf monarchies and emirates, could be a great ally against Daesh. Meanwhile in Israel Netanyahu, politicians and the media continue to blunder.

Dossier

Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.