„We are glad if the Christians return to Iraq and give contribution to its reconstruction. Iraqis of all religious denomination are longing for a new Iraq that believes in peace, harmony and rejects violence” – emphasized the Prime Minister of Iraq. „Our country is for everyone, and Christians are also the native children that of.” – stated Al-Kadhimi.
In response, Patriarch Sako promised the Church’s support for the new Government in its efforts to restore stability and security. „Christians should be considered equal in every respect, and bias will no longer be accepted. State and Church should be separated” – stated Cardinal Louis Raphaël Sako in an interview with the Vatican Radio.
For the Government’s part there are already encouraging signs, like the appointment of a Christian advisor into the Government. „I told the Prime Minister that corruption should be fought against; stealing money is a sin. So, Al-Kadhimi asked me to be at disposal whenever he is in need of an advice, which I’m absolutely ready for.” – shared his meeting experiences Patriarch Sako.
The escaped Christians have started to return to their home, still they do not feel themselves fully safe. This uneasy feeling was well confirmed by the survey of an international Catholic pastoral aid organisation, the „Aid to the Church in Need” (Kirche in Not) and has been published in their report: „Life after Isis: New challenges to Christianity in Iraq.” As to the Catholic pastoral aid organisation, if the international communities are not going to interfere as earliest as possible, more people will be enforced to leave the country, triggering a further decrease in the Christian population of Iraq, which had already dropped by 80 % during the war against Saddam Hussein’s regime. Furthermore there is a serious warning that Christianity in Iraq is perilously close to extinction.
Source: Vatican Radio; Magyar Kurír