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    » 05/22/2007, 00.00

    IRAQ

    Free, but “deeply marked” the Chaldean priest kidnapped in Baghdad



    Fr. Nawzat P. Hanna was released yesterday after three days in captivity. Currently he is in safe keeping in the capital, but he bares marks of having been beaten. Baghdad’s auxiliary bishop: “Let u spray that these episodes do not happen again and that our priest finds the courage to remain in Iraq, to serve his Church”.

    Baghdad (AsiaNews) –Chaledean priest Nawzat P. Hanna  freed yesterday evening in Baghdad after three days of captivity carries the signs of having been beaten. Msgr Shlemon Warduni, auxiliary bishop of the capital’s Chaldean Catholic Church himself went to fetch the priest “in a certain part of the city” as he told AsiaNews today. His release took place at around 9.30 in the evening.  “When he saw me – tells the prelate – Fr. Nawzat strongly embraced me, he was in tears and he was deeply tried; he then thanked all of those who had prayed for him in these days, The Virgin and the saint of his parish, Mar Pithion”.

     

    The priest has recovered somewhat, “he has calmed” and he is in Baghdad. “Let us hope that he finds the courage to continue serving the Church in Iraq – augurs msgr. Warduni – his family have already moved abroad but he instead chose to remain with his parishioners”. In the past other priests kidnapped in the capital were subsequently transferred to Northern Iraq or abroad because of the high security risk.

     

    Parish priest of the Mar Pithion Church, in the Baladiyat quarter of the capital, Fr Nawzat was leaving the home of a sick parishioner May 19th when he was stopped by a group of people who “had been waiting for him”.  The abductors immediately contacted the Patriarchate demanding a “very high” ransom for his release.

     

    “Let us pray – concluded the bishop – that events such as these do not happen again”.

     

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    See also

    21/05/2007 IRAQ
    ”High” ransom demanded for Priest kidnapped in Baghdad
    Msgr. Warduni confirms: “we are in constant contact with his abductors, and we are praying for his release”. Rumours, spread yesterday, of Fr Nawzat’s release are quashed. The priest is now in his third day of captivity. Meanwhile the Christian exodus from the capital continues: an NGO in Dora counts the remaining families and urges then not to flee.

    19/05/2007 IRAQ
    A Chaldean priest is kidnapped in Baghdad
    Fr. Nawzat P. Hanna, parish priest of Mar Pithion, was abducted this morning in the capital’s al-Baladiyat quarter. Baghdad’s auxiliary bishop: “We will pray for his immediate release, but we will not submit to fear”. Local Christians warn of systematic plan by terrorists to “clean-up” the city quarter by quarter.

    07/09/2009 IRAQ
    Mosul: more kidnappings and murders of Christians, to force them to the plain of Nineveh
    A 60 year-old businessman killed, his kidnappers had demanded an enormous ransom. Another faithful of Mosul kidnapped; the fate of the doctor who was kidnapped in Kirkuk remains shrouded in mystery, AsiaNews sources: the violence disguises a political project to drive Christians out the city and force them to the plain of Nineveh.

    04/06/2007 IRAQ
    The Chaldean Church mourns Fr. Ragheed Ganni and his martyrs
    Patriarch Emmanuel III Delly together with all of the Chaldean bishops condemn this barbarous murder of the priest and his three deacons, massacred yesterday in Mosul after Sunday Mass: “A horrible crime against God and humanity , may these martyrs find eternal rest”. This afternoon the funerals will be held in Karamles. New information comes to light surrounding the murders.

    22/05/2009 IRAQ
    Kirkuk: young Christian teacher is freed thanks to help of Muslims
    Joint intervention of army and tribal leaders led to the release of Namir Nadhim Gourguis, kidnapped on May 14th last. No ransom was paid. Decisive the mediation between Imam and tribal chiefs. Msgr Sako: “the Christian community of Kirkuk rejoices”.



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