ASIA/IRAQ - Chaldean Patriarch calls politicians to "national reconciliation": "To protect the people before the oil wells"

Thursday, 19 October 2017 oriental churches   middle east   area crisis   nationalisms   sectaniarism

Baghdad (Agenzia Fides) – The "unprecedented circumstances" that the country is going through are "the result of all that happened in Iraq from the north to the south for years and until now". Therefore, this critical phase requires a comprehensive and national collaboration to go "beyond this crisis" and points out the deep causes of the instability and fragility that plague the Country since the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime. This is what Chaldean Patriarch Louis Raffael Sako addressed to all Iraqi political authorities, both national and regional, in order to avoid further suffering for the population. In an appeal released by official channels of the Patriarchate, the Primate of the Chaldean Church - who on Wednesday 18 October was received together with his auxiliary Bishops by Iraqi President Fuad Masum (see photo) - underlines the urgency of a "real, national reconciliation" to ease the political process on the right path. Although he does not mention the word "Kurdistan", the Patriarch makes explicit critical references to the way in which the independent referendum of the autonomous region of Iraqi Kurdistan was carried out, and the reactions it triggered by the central government: national reconciliation, "and not just a referendum", reads the patriarchal appeal, sent to Agenzia Fides "can lead to practical and proper ways out of the whole crisis". According to Patriarch Louis Raffael, "the right solutions cannot be reached without negotiations and reform of thinking. This method shall lead to offering mutual concessions courageously and the cooperation of Iraq's various leaderships as one front against the danger of creating new conflicts; namely, to protect the people first before the oil wells", the Patriarch adds, implicitly referring to the military operations carried out by the government of Baghdad. (GV) (Agenzia Fides, 19/10/2017)