Mosul (AsiaNews) - Bishops and Christian representatives have withdrawn from a conference on "Social Coexistence and Tolerance" organized in Erbil by the Iraqi Ministry of Human Rights. The gesture was intended as a protest against yet another crime committed against Christians. The day before, in fact, there was another Christian victim in Mosul, Fadi Walid Gabriel, 26, a Syrian Orthodox, the victim of a cold-blooded murder committed by three men.
The killing of the young engineer took place two days ago, November 30, and the funeral was held yesterday. Fadi Walid was in his shop, in the Zuhoor neighborhood of Mosul, where he was also lived, when three armed men broke in and abducted him at gunpoint. They led him to an empty shop nearby and murdered him in cold blood. With the death of Fadi Walid the number of Syrian Christians murdered after the massacre of the church of Our Lady Salvation in Baghdad increases to eight.
In protest against what seems an unstoppable wave of violence against the Christian minority, the representatives of the Christian communities have withdrawn from the conference on Social Coexistence and Tolerance, organized by the Iraqi Ministry for Human Rights. Local sources say that the bishop Afak Assadorian, President of the Council of the Churches in Iraq gave the signal for withdrawal. Both Assadorian that other bishops have publicly expressed their outrage at this latest attack on Christians. The session was suspended, and there was an emergency meeting to convince the Christian delegation to return. They agreed only after being assured that their demands will be contained in the "Manifesto" to be published at the end of the conference. Following the resumption of discussions, in a brief speech, the Chaldean archbishop of Kirkuk, Mgr. Louis Sako said: "It 's our democratic right to ask the Iraqi government and the defence minister to impose their control and protect Christians in Iraq, they should protect everyone, but right now, especially Iraqi Christians."