Rome (AsiaNews) - A "humanitarian catastrophe, which threatens to become a real genocide", Mar Louis Sako, Patriarch of Baghdad, told AsiaNews as he describe the flight of Christians from Mosul and Qaraqosh, in the Nineveh Plain. The Army of the Islamic caliphate has forced more than 100,000 people to leave their homes and belongings, fleeing to Kurdistan their lives threatened.
"An exodus, a real via crucis, Christians are walking on foot in Iraq's searing summer heat [. . .] the sick, the elderly, infants and pregnant women among them. [. . .] They need food, water and shelter . . ."
Thousands of Christian families have had to flee because of threats to their life unless they converted to Islam, or paid the jizya, the poll tax imposed on those who are "protected" under a strict interpretation of Sharia. As they fled, they had to leave everything to their tormentors.
Faced with such a tragedy, Pope Francis has continued to send messages of solidarity and issued appeals to the international community to stop the violence and abuses against Iraq's Christian community.
Yesterday, the pope urgently called "on the international community to protect all those affected or threatened by the violence, and to guarantee all necessary assistance - especially the most urgently needed aid - to the great multitude of people who have been driven from their homes, whose fate depends entirely on the solidarity of others."
AsiaNews has decided to respond to this appeal by raising funds for our brothers and sisters who have been robbed of their right to life and liberty. To feed a Christian from Mosul takes about 160 € (US$ 215) a month; 40 € (US$ 54) a week; and 5 € (US$ 7) a day.
We invite all our readers and friends to play their part, going beyond indignation and condemnation, expressing our solidarity through our support to Iraqi Christians. The funds raised will be sent to the Patriarchate of Baghdad, who will distribute them according to the needs of each family.
For the Patriarch of Baghdad, it is more important in this emergency to help Christians stay in Iraq than leave the country. Iraq and the Middle East need the witness of Christians.
Donations can be made several ways. All should indicate reason for payment to "AsiaNews - Adopt a Christian from Mosul":
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