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» 11/04/2010
IRAQ
Archbishop Sako, security and tolerance necessary for future of Iraq’s Christians
An appeal of the Archbishop of Kirkuk: civil authorities must strive to ensure security, all Muslim religious condemn attacks and encourage texts that promote peaceful coexistence. Sentences of hatred towards other religions must be removed from the school books of all Islamic countries.

Kirkuk (AsiaNews) - To ensure security schools, religious sermons, and media must fight against the spirit of intolerance and hatred towards followers of other religions.  This is the appeal that Mgr. Louis Sako, archbishop of Kirkuk, launched in the aftermath of the massacre in the Cathedral of Our Lady, in Baghdad.

"Our ordeal – the Archbishop tells AsiaNews - is hard and it seems unending. The carnage that took place in the Cathedral of Our Lady in Baghdad, with 58 deaths, including two young priests, and 67 wounded, has deeply shaken us. We are losing patience, but not faith and hope. What is most striking is that an event of this magnitude came immediately after the holding of the Synod for the Middle East and its appeal for a harmonious coexistence between Christians and Muslims. "

"What we need is prayer, moral support and fellowship. Without it we feel alone and isolated”.

"It is true - says Mgr. Sako - that Islam recognizes Christians and Jews and the Sabians, because they are the People of the Book. They cite the verse Indeed, those who believed and those who were Jews or Christians or Sabeans - those who believed in Allah and the Last Day and did righteousness - will have their reward with their Lord, and no fear will there be concerning them, nor will they grieve (62 of Surat Al-Baqara), but against this the extremists use other verses such as the following “If anyone desires anything other than Islam as a religion in the hereafter he will be among the losers” (Al-Imran 85).

The Archbishop offers some "practical and immediate measures":

"1 - It 's the duty of the security authorities in Iraq to provide protection for places of worship for Christians, especially on Sundays.

2 - Muslim religious leaders of all faiths have a duty to condemn these terrorist attacks in public and highlight the religious texts, which support the spirit of tolerance and peaceful coexistence between religions.

3 – A change in the curriculum at all levels and in all Muslim countries in particular the withdrawal of all the words of hatred against the followers of other religions.

4 - A spirit of tolerance and coexistence must be spread by the media and themes should be introduced to promote cooperation among citizens with the elimination of religious intolerance, such as the principles of sociology, philosophy, history and comparative religion".


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See also
09/11/2010 IRAQ
Kirkuk: "Burn the Koran" campaign strengthens friendship between Christians and Muslims
03/11/2008 IRAQ
Silence must not descend on Archbishop of Mosul
09/10/2010 ISLAM - PAKISTAN
“Burn a Koran” campaign suspended but not called off. Fear for the Christians of Pakistan
11/22/2010 IRAQ
After the attacks on Christians in Baghdad, 40 families emigrate North
by Layla Yousif Rahema
09/02/2009 IRAQ
Archbishop Louis Sako: Muslims want us to promote national reconciliation

Editor's choices
IRAQ-ITALY
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul," the thanks of the Patriarch Louis Sako; the concerns of the Bishop of Kurdistan
by Bernardo CervelleraThe head of the Chaldean Church is grateful for the AsiaNews campaign and hopes that "this chain of solidarity will reach far and wide”. Helping refugees to remain in Iraq. But many want to flee abroad. The bishop of Amadiyah where thousands of displaced people have found haven in churches and homes: We also help the Arabs (Muslims), and Yazidis, for free and without looking at our confessional differences.
ITALY - IRAQ
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul" to respond directly to Iraq's emergencyAsiaNews is launching a fundraiser to support Christians targeted by the Islamic State, thus responding to a request by the Patriarch of Baghdad and Pope Francis's urgent appeal "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." More than 100,000 people have been forced to flee their homes leaving everything behind and now have nothing to live on. To help them, five euros a day are enough. The funds raised will be sent to the Patriarchate of Baghdad, which will distribute them according to the needs of each family.
CHINA - VATICAN
Wenzhou bishop and priests slam government's campaign against crosses and churches in Zhejiang
by Eugenia ZhangFor Mgr Vincent Zhu Weifang, from the official Church, the campaign of destruction is increasing social instability. It is real persecution against the Christian faith. The bishop apologises for failing to intervene sooner. He was hoping that the campaign would end quickly. Catholics and Protestants suffer injuries as they attempt to defend their sacred buildings. For priests in Wenzhou, the campaign is unfair and touches buildings that have all the right papers. Such "stupid acts" by the government are undermining social harmony.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
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