Christian leaders call Baghdad to account

By July 2, 2010

Iraq (MNN) — At the 2nd annual All-Iraqi Christian
Leadership Conference, 76 Iraqi Christian leaders called on Baghdad to defend
minority rights. 

The group issued an eight-point appeal asking for help in
keeping the dwindling minority community alive. Christian Solidary International co-sponsored the meeting in hopes of bringing some solution to the
growing problems facing the Church.

Christians are being pushed to the brink of extinction. Iraq is 17th on the Open Doors World Watch
List of top 50 countries known for persecution of Christians.

Since 2003, nearly half of the Christians have been forced
to flee. In May, extremists warned Christians to leave the country immediately
or risk violent death.  

The tension is palpable. Going into this summit, Zenit news reported a targeted murder of a
Christian businessman in Kirkuk.

On June 7, according to the
report, 34-year-old Hani Salim Wadi was shot and killed in front of
his home. This is just one of many incidents that has
caused Christians in Iraq to express fear of renewed violence.  

However, at the June 26 meeting, the Chaldean Catholic
Archbishop of Kirkuk emphasized the need for an enduring Christian witness in
the country. 

Although a remnant remains, the Gospel is still moving
forward. Pray for ministry
opportunities for churches and Christian relief organizations working in Iraq.

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