Sunday, December 12, 2010

With New Violence, More Christians Are Fleeing Iraq

QOSH, Iraq — A new wave of Iraqi Christians has fled to northern Iraq or abroad amid a campaign of violence against them and growing fear that the country’s security forces are unable or, more ominously, unwilling to protect them.

The flight — involving thousands of residents from Baghdad and Mosul, in particular — followed an Oct. 31 siege at a church in Baghdad that killed 51 worshipers and 2 priests and a subsequent series of bombings and assassinations singling out Christians. This new exodus, which is not the first, highlights the continuing displacement of Iraqis despite improved security over all and the near-resolution of the political impasse that gripped the country after elections in March.

It threatens to reduce further what Archdeacon Emanuel Youkhana of the Assyrian Church of the East called “a community whose roots were in Iraq even before Christ.”

Those who fled the latest violence — many of them in a panicked rush, with only the possessions they could pack in cars — warned that the new violence presages the demise of the faith in Iraq. Several evoked the mass departure of Iraq’s Jews after the founding of the state of Israel in 1948.

“It’s exactly what happened to the Jews,” said Nassir Sharhoom, 47, who fled last month to the Kurdish capital, Erbil, with his family from Dora, a once mixed neighborhood in Baghdad. “They want us all to go.”
Red the rest here.

2 comments:

Igumen Gregory said...

it is not in the Muslim community's self interest for the Christians to flee because of persecution; the factions of Muslims will then be the next concerted targets for hatred and violence. It is a shame that such large segments of Islam are terrorized by their own co-religionists.

The Anti-Gnostic said...

it is not in the Muslim community's self interest for the Christians to flee because of persecution; the factions of Muslims will then be the next concerted targets for hatred and violence.

Do you realize what you wrote? You are arguing that Muslims should not persecute Christians because then other Muslim factions would lose their whipping boy.

Probably true, but really quite beside the point.