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Church in Iraq

20 February 2015

THE Chaldean Archbishop of Erbil, the Rt Revd Bashar Warda, addressed the Synod on Tuesday, asking for prayer and financial aid for the Christians fleeing violence in his country.

"Many times I have spoken in front of audiences such as this," he said. "But it has always been to give warnings of what might happen . . .

"Now, the situation is different.There are no more waves of refugees or displaced persons to come to Kurdistan. Mosul is empty; Basrah is empty; Baghdad is empty. We Christians do not have to plan for that eventuality any more."

He went on: "It is difficult to have to plead or beg for the help of the Church, the EU, the United States, Canada, to act now in such a way that there is opportunity for a Christian nucleus to remain and thrive in Iraq."

During the past year, Christians in Iraq had suffered the "worst acts of genocide" in their history, he told the Synod. "We are now facing the extinction of Christianity as a religion and as a culture from Mesopotamia."

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