» 11/18/2013, 00.00
Patriarch Sako: Task of government and religious leaders to unite Iraq
Speaking to Parliament in Baghdad on human rights, His Beatitude describes a reality that is "a source of concern." Security has "deteriorated" as have divisions of a confessional nature , fanned by " regional and international" powers. He calls for an end to the divisions and asks for greater courage from political and religious leaders to "unite the people."
Baghdad ( AsiaNews) - The Iraqi
reality is still a source of "concern" and in recent months the security
situation has "deteriorated"; sectarian divisions are becoming more
pronounced, while "regional and international" powers feed the
growing fractures inside the
was stated by the Chaldean Patriarch Mar Louis Raphael I Sako, in a speech
yesterday before the Iraqi parliament on the occasion of Human Rights Day. The
intervention of His Beatitude was an opportunity for encounter and exchange
between the different souls of the nation, to exchange ideas and projects
inspired by the theme "Minorities in Iraq: reality and Ambition".
Chaldean Patriarch did not fail to emphasize the exponential growth "of
extremism of a religious nature" which particularly affects Christians,
Yazidis and Sabi (a minority concentrated in southern Iraq ) . Attacks
that have triggered emigration, which Mar Sako has long battled against - since
the days when he was archbishop of Kirkuk - but "favored " by some
foreign embassies . "A
phenomenon - he pointed out - that ends up impoverishing the nation."
Describing the current "reality",
the Chaldean Patriarch pointed the finger at "the culture of the Majority
and Minority" which he termed "unsuccessful because it is a political term
that carries an aspect of exclusion and marginalization on account of equal
citizenship and especially of the rights of minorities". Ahead
of travelling to Rome in the next few days for the Plenary Assembly of the
Eastern Churches, Mar Sako traced some essential points for the reconstruction
of the country. First
of all, he pointed to the "unique and irreplaceable" role of religious
leaders "in uniting the people." The
Patriarch warned that the various groups must "work together to promote a
culture of dialogue and peace in a tangible way" also focusing on
Sako also said government and administrative offices that need to be united and
work together "to provide safety, security and freedom to citizens and
various ethnic groups". They
must also be guarantors of "reconciliation and social cohesion" among
all souls. The
"culture of peace" , warned the Patriarch, is also the result of
"mutual care " between people and "dialogue and trust". He
invited everyone to assume "their responsibilities in building bridges
rather than walls" and adopt a "balanced dialogue, open to all and ready
to solve problems," so that all the souls of Iraq may feel "they are
part of one single family".
Appeal from Archbishop Sako: politics is also trying to wipe out Iraqi Christians
The archbishop of Kirkuk launches an appeal to the government and to UN representatives, for the protection of Christians and other minorities, excluded from the new law that will regulate the provincial elections. Yesterday, in all of Iraqi Kurdistan, demonstrations were held after the Sunday Masses.
Baghdad Patriarch calls on parliament to save the country from division
Iraq's National Assembly meets again today. It has failed so far to find a shared line and elect the country's 'three presidents'. Mar Sako says that parliamentarians have an "historical and moral responsibility" to save the nation from the "danger" of division. He includes a prayer to be recited before parliament starts work.
Patriarch of Baghdad: While politicians argue, Iraqi Christians continue to suffer and die
Visiting refugee camps in Erbil and Dohok, Mar Sako speaks of a situation "beyond all imagination". He appeals to the international community and the Muslim world "that have not yet understood the gravity of the situation." The militiamen kidnap a Christian girl of three years, two men die from hunger. Baghdad and Tehran work on a joint plan of action.
For Mar Sako, one year after the Mosul tragedy, only unity and reconciliation can save Iraq
On the first anniversary of the great exodus from the Nineveh Plain, the Chaldean Patriarch addresses a letter to Iraq’s government and parliament. In it, he denounces the difficult conditions in which Christians and Yezidis still live, as well as the thousands of deaths among Muslims. Peace is the only response to the violence of extremist groups who "exploit religion".
Patriarch of Baghdad welcomes amendments to Law on Islamization of children
The Iraqi parliament begins process to change the controversial bill, accepting the objections of Christians and other minorities. An act of "justice" and "equality" that equates all citizens. Mar Sako: This is an "important message" and a "test of our democracy".
HONG KONG – CHINA – VATICAN
On “Hong Kong sectors” supposedly "against Francis"
John Mok Chit Wai
A scholar at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, who collaborates with AsiaNews, responds to accusations against the agency and people in Hong Kong with respect to criticism of the Vatican’s diplomatic approach towards China. Religious freedom is a fundamental human right and a universal value, whether in China, Russia or the Middle East. Between "Right" and "Left", China defines itself as left, yet it practices state capitalism and unfettered capitalism just as "right-wing governments" do. Gaudium et Spes calls on the faithful to engage in politics against the "arbitrary domination by [. . .] a political party,” like in China.
The "enemies" of Pope Francis
The charge made against AsiaNews that we are against the Pope and in favor of Putin, is an opportunity to outline what motivates our commitment to evangelization. And also to ask for greater professionalism from those who write about the Pope. The Pope does not need public defenders. Facilitating dialogue between "conservatives" and "progressives" to realize the Council and concern ourselves with the world so that it encounters Jesus Christ. Christ’s “enemies” were also his "friends."
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