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    » 12/16/2010, 00.00

    IRAQ

    New attack against Christians in Iraq. Girl kidnapped from her home in Mosul



    Gunmen broke into the house on the evening of December 15 in Mosul and forcibly abducted the student. Patriarch Ignatius III Younan denounces cover-up of the terror targeting Iraqi Christians.

    Mosul (AsiaNews / Agencies) - A new attack on the Christian community in Iraq. On the evening of December 15 armed militants abducted a young Christian female student from her home in Iraq’s northern city of Mosul. The gunmen burst into her home in Mosul’s Karaj neighbourhood overnight and drove her away to an undisclosed location, according to the Ankawa Christian news website. The girl is a student of a local technical institute.

    It is the latest in a string of attacks against the country's Christian community, once 100 thousand Christians lived in Mosul, but now only five thousand live in the area, due to growing wave of religious fundamentalism, and attacks against them. The Iraqi government decided only days ago to protect Christian churches with three meter high concrete walls, to avoid tragic incidents like the attack on the Syrian-Catholic Cathedral in Baghdad Oct. 31.

    In his homily of 10 December the Syrian Catholic Patriarch Ignatius Joseph III Younan asked the Iraqi government to ensure the safety of all Iraqi citizens, and particularly Christians, "people who are honest, peaceful and helpless." The patriarch in the mass in memory of the "46 new martyrs" of the church of Our Lady of Salavation, which took place in the presence of members of the government denounced that “the cover-up of the terror targeting Iraqi Christians is still going on after such a period of time. E it is the responsibility of the Iraqi government to carry out proper and thorough investigations to uncover the terrorist groups who did plan and finance the carnage, of whatever religious or political allegiance they may be, and to bring them publically to justice".His words were echoed at the European Parliament in Strasbourg on December 15 when Mgr. Athanase Matti Shaba Matoka, archbishop of Baghdad, told the assembly; ''Iraq's Christians live in fear of the future”.

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    See also

    26/08/2010 IRAQ
    Karakosh - Baghdeeda: a Christian originally from Mosul is kidnapped
    Louyaé Behnam was kidnapped yesterday by a group of armed men. The family has already paid a ransom of 15 thousand dollars, but the kidnappers have not yet released the man. Throughout the country attacks continue after the withdrawal of U.S. troops.

    29/11/2010 IRAQ
    Terrorists behind attack on Baghdad church arrested
    In the operation conducted by Iraqi security forces, new plans to target four buildings discovered. The 12 arrested have admitted their responsibility. But the news of the capture is no comfort to the Christian community, which continues to leave Baghdad.

    30/12/2009 IRAQ
    Christian student kidnapped by Islamic group in Mosul
    The girl was abducted from the faculty of education. In the past, attacks have occurred against Christian university students because they wear make up or they refused to wear the veil. Attacks and kidnappings are a "warning" to force the mass exodus of Christians. Some people speak of "ethnic cleansing" on a religious basis.

    28/02/2010 VATICAN
    Pope appeals for Christians in Iraq and prays for the earthquake victims in Chile
    In his first public address after his retreat, Benedict XVI expresses solidarity with Christians and people of Iraq and calls on the country's authorities to "ensure security" not to be dominated by "vested interests" for the support of the international community. Request for solidarity for the victims of the earthquake in Chile. During Lent, faithful and priests are invited to "constant meditation" on the Gospel. The attitude of the disciples in the transfiguration of Jesus

    17/02/2010 IRAQ
    Mosul a Christian student killed, community denounces "politicized massacre"
    Yet another targeted execution against a Christian of the city. The young man was gunned down and shot dead on his way to college. A friend wounded in the attack. The faithful speak of "political project well organized" to force them to flee to the plain of Nineveh.



    Editor's choices

    CHINA – VATICAN
    Global Times: the pope should accept the independence of the Chinese Church



    After 24 hours of silence, China’s media today published excerpts, comments and editorials about Pope Francis’ interview with Asia Times. Although the pope did not address religious issues or Church problems, many saw the interview as an attempt to improve diplomatic relations between China and the Vatican, and advised Francis to accept Mao Zedong’s "three principles of independence" (theology, administration, jurisdiction), which would leave the power to appoint bishops in the hands of the Party. The People's Daily’s Global Times publishes an editorial on the issue.


    INDIA – PHILIPPINES
    Archbishop of Guwahati: In Asia religion is not dying, the faithful take strength from the Eucharist



    Mgr Menamparampil is among the speakers at the International Eucharistic Congress in Cebu, Philippines. He was also a conflict mediator between various ethnic groups. He told AsiaNews about the value of the Congress for the Catholic Church in Asia and how people can bear witness the Gospel today, even amid tensions and violence of those who "hate us." "with the same pain in our hearts that we descend to our depths during a Eucharistic adoration."


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