Iraq’s Assyrian Church under siege

An alarming report ("Assyrians Face Escalating Abuses in "New Iraq")on the plight of the ancient Assyrian community in Iraq.   

The longstanding persecution of ethnic minorities in Iraq is quietly writing the end chapter to Iraqi Assyrian history: if the world doesn’t wake up to the plight of this people, they will soon be shoved through the door of extinction, warn patrons and human rights defenders.

The Assyrian Christian population of Iraq, historically traceable to the Mesopotamian cradle of civilisation, has increasingly become the target of both ethnic and religious attacks since the U.S.-led invasion and the overthrow of the Saddam Hussein regime in 2003.

While I think some of the reports of persecution of Christians in Muslim majority countries are greatly exaggerated for political reasons, IPS is a credible and sober media outlet not wont to sensationalism, so I take their warnings very seriously.

In Muslim majority societies, Muslims have a responsibility to protect and deal equitably with non-Muslim communities living in their midst.  That goes double for ones that predate even the advent of Islam in the region, such as the Chaldeans.

As full blown civil war seems to inch closer with every day, I suppose Iraqis have bigger problems to contend with,but I do hope measures are taken to safeguard the rights and heritage of this ancient and historic Iraqi community.


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