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German Bishops: Mgr. Ludwig Schick’s visit to Iraq comes to an end. Need to “support Christians”

 

Mgr. Ludwig Schick, Archbishop of Bamberg and president of the Commission for the Universal Church of the German Bishops’ Conference (DBK), concluded his visit to Iraq on Saturday, 7 April. Baghdad and the autonomous region of Kurdistan were among the places that the prelate visited alongside the representatives of Catholic organizations operating in the region. “We must support any initiative that helps Christians to stay or return”, Mgr. Schick encouraged, stressing that “aid should always be aimed at achieving peaceful coexistence among peoples of different religions”. We need to rebuild not only homes but also “the structures of civil society” and help “victims to overcome the trauma of so much violence”. Mgr. Schick said he was “impressed” by the desire of young people to “take responsibility, even if they ask: for what?”, and denounced the “primitive” conditions of a number of refugee camps, such as the one in Shariya near Dohuk, which has been home to 27,000 refugees over the past 4 years. “Living in a tent for years is inhumane”, and besides structural problems, Mgr. Schick also denounced the “increasing spiral of violence born of constant frustration”, which is a “threat to peaceful coexistence”. The goal for the German organizations is to increase resources and improve coordination in the various areas of activity to ensure “Christians can have a future in Iraq and live in dignity and peace with other people”.

 

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