ASIA/IRAQ – Chaldean Patriarch: no “Christian militia ” to free land occupied by jihadists
Baghdad (Agenzia Fides) - “To think that our victory can depend on the formation of isolated armed factions to fight to defend our rights could lead to another 'holocaust',” has it happened in the past when Christian militia “fought the wars of others ”. Whereas the path to take is to “learn a lesson from history”, and possibly support regular armed forces. Chaldean Patriarch Louis Raphael I distances himself absolutely and definitively from groups within Syrian, Assyrian, Chaldean Christian communities asserting the necessity to defend each their own community rights and fight jihadist militia by forming armed groups on a confessional basis.
In a long message addressed to all Chaldeans and issued through the official channels of the Patriarchate, the Primate of the Chaldean Church says clearly that in reality these confessional militia are “sponsored and supported by the same powers which started the conflict”, whereas the only legitimate and efficacious solution– according to the Patriarch in his intervention, sent to Fides – is to join regular army forces such as the Iraqi army or the army of the Autonomous Region of Iraqi Kurdistan and to “collaborate with them to free our occupied land. We – the Chaldean Primate continues “must realise that our destiny is the same destiny of all Iraqis, and this is the only way to guarantee our future together, where Shiite are called to offer their lives together with Kurds, Sunnis, Christians and Turkmen”.
In the same intervention the Chaldea Patriarch, describes the brand of Islamist extremism which is devastating Middle Eastern scenarios “anomalous and politically remote-controlled”, and he repeats firmly his conviction that “nothing can ever expel Christianity from the Middle East, despite all the difficulties, as long as there are Christians determined to stay in the land of their birth, proud of their identity and their mission in this part of the world”. (GV) (Agenzia Fides 8/3/2016).