IRAQ: CARD. PELL (SYDNEY), "CHRISTIANS SUBJECTED TO ETHNIC CLEANSING"

"A veritable disaster": card. George Pell, archbishop of Sydney, doesn’t mince his words when he describes the conditions in which Iraqi Christians are currently living. From the website ankawa.com, the cardinal denounces: "Christians are suffering a regular terrorist campaign aimed to drive them out of Iraq where they have been living since before the arrival of Muslims. The police are incompetent and usually not too willing to defend them". And then he lists a sequence of events that see Christians the victims of abuse: "the abduction and death of mgr. Rahho, archbishop of Mosul, a city that is out of the government’s control and occupied by Sunnis, the murder of Orthodox and Catholic priests, such as the Chaldeian Ragheed Ganni, churches destroyed, Christians forced to pay a protection tax or compelled to leave everything and go away. Terrorists and ordinary criminals are terrorising a community that has no protectors. Christians are escaping from the Middle East – concludes Pell –, and this is just one more example of ethnic cleansing". As everyone knows, Sydney will host the next World Youth Day (15-20 July). As announced to SIR by mgr. Anthony Fisher, the bishop who coordinates the event, the WYD will also be attended by young Iraqi Christians, who will therefore be able to forget for some time the horrors of their country.” ” ” “

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