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Speakers - The Hon. David Clarke

April 10, 2008

At the Parliament of New South Wales Australia
Page: 6806

The Hon. DAVID CLARKE [6.11 p.m.]: The continuing and escalating persecution of Christians in the Middle East should be a matter of deep concern to all Australians who believe in freedom of religion, freedom of conscience and
basic human rights. At a time in history when we are witnessing the onward progress of mankind in so many fields, particularly in the field of human rights, and at a time in history when hundreds of millions of people have
attained their liberation from communist dictatorship and repression, what an indictment it is that Christians in the Middle East are suffering rapidly mounting discrimination, repression and physical annihilation.

What a melancholy tragedy and loss it is that the distinctive and rich heritage of Christianity in the Middle East-a heritage going back 2,000 years-now faces total extinction. And what an infamy it is that those who uphold that Christian heritage and still remain in the Middle East face physical extinction as well. Daily we see not only the destructiveness of Islamist jihadists as they seek to eradicate all traces of Christianity in that region, but we see also the destructiveness they direct against other religious faith traditions, such as the Mandeans, the Druze and the Baha'is. Let us not forget that their destructiveness is also directed against mainstream Islam and against the overwhelming majority of Muslims who just want to live in peace and harmony with their neighbours from other faith

The Christians of Iraq have been a particular target in recent years. The area now known as Iraq has for 2,000 years been a centre of Christianity. The ancient Assyrians, whose empire was centred there, were the very first people as a whole to convert to Christianity. Since then the area has been home to several distinct and vibrant branches of the church. The Assyrian Church of the East, the Chaldean Catholics and the various Syriac churches
have a long and unique heritage there. Whilst they have, over the centuries, suffered varying degrees of persecution, ranging from discriminatory laws to outright physical annihilation, recent years have seen a massive escalation of this persecution at the hands of Islamist jihadists and extremists. If it continues at the current level, a community that once comprised millions will be totally obliterated within a few short years.

Only a few days ago yet another priest of the Assyrian Church of the East was murdered, gunned down in front of his home. A few weeks prior to that an internationally respected bishop of the Chaldean Catholic Church was found murdered, having been kidnapped some weeks before. There was the recent case of a nun who was abducted and then found dead-her neck had been slashed from ear to ear and she had been decapitated. Cases such as these occur on almost a daily basis. Christians are threatened with murder if they refuse to
remove crosses from churches. Christians are threatened with death if they do not convert to Islam. Dozens of churches have been burnt to the ground. One observer has summarised the position as: Convert to Islam, marry your daughter to our fighters, pay an Islamic tax, or leave with only the clothes on your back.

Many hundreds of thousands have already fled and many of them languish in poverty in Syria where they still face discrimination and obstacles not suffered by other refugees who are not of the Christian faith. Only in Christian nations such as Australia do they feel that they are able to find genuine sanctuary. Australia has already accepted several thousand such refugees. Last year the then Liberal Minister for Immigration, Kevin Andrews, announced a program to escalate the intake of Christian refugees from Iraq on the basis that their need was the most pressing. It is to be hoped that the Rudd Government will continue this program and not allow ideologues unsympathetic to the unique plight of these Christian refugees from Islamist extremist persecutors to subvert and derail the program announced by the former Minister for Immigration, Kevin Andrews.

Whilst it is equally tragic, equally reprehensible and worthy of equal condemnation that significant numbers of Iraq's dominant Muslim community have also been targets of sectarian violence, they can at least find some comfort within their wider majority Muslim community. Should they become refugees they at least have the prospect of refuge in a neighbouring Islamic country without the same restrictions and difficulties placed upon them as experienced by Christian refugees. The problems faced by the small and diminishing Christian minority in Iraq are unique and are not experienced to anywhere near the same extent by those who are part of the substantially
larger non-Christian Iraqi population. That is why their position is the most desperate. That is why they have a more pressing need of help at the present time. The Christians of Iraq are facing desperate, devastating and
deadly times. Australia needs to ensure that it acts with humanity. It needs to assist in a practical way. Australia needs to accept in substantial and greater numbers Christian refugees from Iraq who, because of their religion
and their cultural heritage, will otherwise face devastation and death.









Nineveh Project: Send a Letter to Congress

Please visit the above link to send a pre written appeal to President Bush and the representatives of the state where you live ask them to help the persecuted Christians of Iraq. (US Residents only)

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Khziran = June

By Hon. David Clarke, At the Parliament of New South Wales Australia

European Parliament Conference Highlights Assyrian Suffering in Iraq June 14, 08

Dora Today June 12, 08

“Why Arab countries need them ? ” June 12, 08

The Latest Islamic Suicide Attack June 11, 08

Egyptian Writer: It's 'Open Season' On Egypt's Christian Copts June 10, 08

Rosie Malek-Yonan Joins Cast of General Hospital June 09, 08

Assyrian woman gets heart surgery at Mercy Gilbert June 08, 08

30 minute film by German TV Channel about the plight of Iraq's Chrisitan Assyrans June 07, 08


Turkey revives stalled $32 billion GAP dam and irrigation project.
May 31, 08

Archbishop Louis Sako: Do Not Abandon Iraqi Christians May 31, 08


Iraqi Christians Seek Refuge in Germany May 28, 08

Iraqi Christians Warn of 'New Catastrophe for Humanity' May 27, 08

Religious Frictions In The Muslim World May 27, 08

Stockholm Demonstration Calls Attention to Plight of Iraqi Assyrians
May 25, 08

Forbidden Pleasures Return to Mosul As Al-Qaeda Melts Away May 25, 08

Experts urge power-sharing for Kirkuk May 24, 08

Childhood Of Poverty Led To Acts Of Generosity May 24, 08

Ashur T.V. program Saturday May 24, 08

Cardinal: Iraqi Christians Shouldn't Get Special Visa Privilege May. 21, 2008

California-based diocese of the Assyrian Apostolic Church enters full communion with the Catholic Church May 17, 08

Pressures to Annex Iraq's Northern Christian Villages to Kurdish Areas May 16, 08

US Senate Armed Services Committee Recognizes the Plight of Displaced Iraqis May 16, 08

KURDISH SCHOLAR REFUTEs KURDS history claims ! May 15, 08

US House Approves $10 Million in Aid for Iraq's Christians May 15, 08

Muslims in Pakistan Want Christian Doctor Hanged for 'Blasphemy' May 15, 08

Australia's AUA Meeting with Minister for Foreign Affairs May 14, 08

Iraqi Shebeks Snub Kurdish Move to Annex Their Areas May 9, 08

In Iran, Covert Christian Converts Live With Secrecy and Fear May 8, 08

_ Journalists in Iraq's Kurdish North Face Increasing Danger May 7, 08

Ethnic and religious minorities in the Iraq of today May 7, 08

Christian Assyrians Face Extinction in Northern Iraq May 6, 08

The Assyrian Lobbying group of EU Parliament Gathers Momentum
May 5, 08

Kurdish Authorities demand that the Assyrian homeland in Northern Iraq be annexed to kurdistan May 5, 08

Outside European Parliament, Assyrians Demand Safety for Assyrians in Iraq April 19, 08

Helping the Displaced in Karmaless Iraq April 19, 08

Dutch MPs Visit North Iraq, Call for Protection for Assyrians
April 18, 08

Iraq's Yezidis Say Kurds Oppressing Them and Forcing Them to Flee
April 18, 08

Christian Iraqis Can't Leave Jordan April 13, 08

Swedish Mayor Calls for Solution to Iraq Refugee Crisis April 13, 08

Assyrians Celebrate New Year In Syria April 13, 08

Senator Lieberman: Do a mitzvah (good deed) for Hanukkah-save Iraqi Christian allies April 12, 08

A legacy for the president: Iraqi Christians April 12, 08

Murder of Syrian Orthodox Priest in Iraq April 12, 08

Iraqi Christians Stuck in Jordan April 12, 08

Journalist Asks Bush to Protect Iraqi Christians April 11, 08

Senators Urge Bush to Appoint Official for Iraq Refugee Policy
April 9, 08

Report of the Dutch MP who Visited Assyrians in Iraq April 9, 08

Swedish Mayor to Explain to U.S. Why His City is Inundated By Assyrians April 9, 08

Targeting Iraq’s Christians April 8, 08

Sweden's Insecure Asylum Testing April 8, 08

Seven Iraqi Christian Orphans Reunited With Relatives in Germany
April 7, 08

Iraqi Christians: Exodus, Ethnic Cleansing and Identity Annihilation
April 7, 08

Sorrow, defiance, Iraq Christians bury slain priest April 6, 08

Dutch Parliament Member Advocates for Protection of Assyrian
Christians in Iraq
April 6, 08

Were Assyrian rulers the forefathers of today's CEOs? April 6, 08

An Invitation to Iraq Action Days, April 14-16, 2008 April 5, 08

A Battle for Land in Northern Iraq April 5, 08

Assyrian priest killed in Baghdad April 5, 08

Assyrian New Year celebrations in Australia a huge success!
April 3, 08

A bit of Mesopotamia in Sweden April 3, 08

Addar = March

Assyrian Clay tablet holds clue to asteroid mystery March 31, 08

The Book of Esther March 31, 08

Press conference about the grim reality facing Iraqi Christians
March 29, 08

Peaceful Protest in Bakhdida, Bartalah, and Karmales
March 28, 08

The pearl of Mardin: Deyrulzafaran Monastery March 27, 08

Sweden feels strain of refugees March 24, 08

Assyrian Protest in the City of Bern March 23, 08

Suspect in kidnapping Archbishop Paulous Rahho has Been Arrested March 23, 08

Polish Researcher Studying Assyrians March 22, 08

Five Years Later, Where are the Christians in Iraq? March 21, 08

Easter Special Ashur TV Program March 21, 08

Pope 'refused audience for Rice' March 20, 08

Assyrians Protest in Sweden against the decimation of their people
March 20, 08

Genocide Unfolding: Death of a Catholic Assyrian Archbishop in Iraq March 18, 08

Christians in Flight in the Middle East March 17, 08

Lieutenant governor of Nineveh Intelligence information available about kidnapping, many arrested March 17, 08

Chicago Skies Spark as Assyrian Stars Come Out to Sing
March 17, 08

Iraqi Parliament Speaker Needs Lesson in History
March 16, 08

Murder of Chaldean Archbishop Provokes Outrage
March 15, 08

Funeral of Archbishop Paulous Faraj Raho Pictures
March 15, 08

Grieving Christians bury Iraqi archbishop March 14, 08

Iraqi Christians Have No Militias to Protect Them
March 14, 08

Besieged Iraqi Christians Need A Safe Haven, Supporters Say March 14, 08

Death Comes for an Iraqi Archbishop March 13, 08

Iraqi Christians' long history March 13, 08

Assyrian Coalition Condemns Murder of Chaldean Archbishop March 13, 08

Christians Besieged in Iraq March 13, 08

US Human Rights Report Affirms Targeting of Iraq's Assyrians March 13, 08

Letter to the Scretary of State Condoleezza Rice
March 13, 08

Kidnapped Iraqi archbishop dead March 13, 08

Pope Benedict to Seek U.S. Help for Iraqi Christians
March 13, 08

TURKEY’S DARK SECRET RESONATING THE AIRWAVES, Turkish Hackers’ Retaliation March 12, 08

Swedish Embassy in Syria Accused of Taking Bribes From Iraqi Refugees March 11, 08

Iraq: Refuge Lost; Archbishop Kidnapped March 11, 08

Candle-Light Vigil to Remember Looting of Iraqi Museum
March 9, 08

The Assyrian Journalist has been released March 8, 08

Iraqis Demand Protection From Crime March 8, 08

Iraqi Christians are defenseless, says top clergyman
March 7, 08

Violence escalates for Christians in Iraq March 6, 08

Why No U.S. Outcry Over the Kidnapping of Archbishop Rahho? March 5, 08

Iraqi Christians Cling to Last, Waning Refuges March 6, 08

Iraq PM Orders Action Over Kidnapped Archbishop
March 4, 08

Sons of Iraq: A Grassroots Surge Against Al-Qaeda
March 3, 08


Muslim Leaders Also Call for the Release of the Bishop of Mosul March 3, 08

Concerns Grow for Safety of Kidnapped Archbishop in Iraq March 2, 08

Iraqi Police Search for Abducted Christian Archbishop
March 2, 08

Assyria Rise Up - First Day Of Spring. March 2, 08

UN Calls for Iraqi Action After Archbishop Seized
March 1, 08

Eshvath = February

Iran's Exodus of Minorities Worries Leaders Of Fading Faiths Feb 29, 2008

Iraqi Christians: Flight to Freedom Feb 29, 2008

Fifth Anniversary Global Candlelight Vigil of the Looting of Iraq Museum. Feb 29, 2008

Ashur t. v. Interview with Mr. Sargon Lazar, of Foreign the Assyrian Democratic Movement Feb 29, 2008

Gunmen kidnap Iraqi Chaldean Catholic archbishop
Feb 29, 2008

Explosion in front of a liquor store in Baghdeda within Nineveh plain Feb 26, 2008

Assyrian Women Union in Erbil helped the "Diasplaced
Feb 26, 2008

Christian Council formation in Kirkuk Feb 26, 2008

Endangered Gaza Christians Mull Flight Amid Deaths, Firebombs Feb 26, 2008

Companions in suffering, An Interview with Thea Halo
Feb 25, 2008

Bishop of Arbil decries the Turkish attack on Christian Assyrian villages Feb 24, 2008

Web Site Targets Assyrian and Other Minorities in Turkey
Feb 24, 2008

Turkey Bombs Assyrian Village in Northern Iraq
Feb 24, 2008

Kirkuk: Christians together to make their voice heard
Feb 22, 2008

Kurdish Authorities Arrest Assyrian Deacon in North Iraq
Feb 22, 2008

Turkish Troops Enter North Iraq Feb 22, 2008

A Christian wedding in the Assyrian town Feb 21, 2008

Scholar Warns of the Danger of Dwindling Assyrians, Christians in the Middle East Feb 19, 2008

Scholar Warns of the Danger of Dwindling Assyrians, Christians in the Middle East Feb 19, 2008

The village in Gilgamesh- film is being plundered
Feb 17, 2008

CAPNI's humanitarian assistance for displaced Christians in northern Iraq Feb 17, 2008

UN Hints At Iraq Refugee Returns Feb 17, 2008

Petition From the Russian Assyrians to Iraq FM
Feb 15, 2008

State Dept. Press Briefing, Part IV, so what happened to the Christians? Feb 15, 2008

UN Seeks Help for 'Desperate' Iraqi Refugees Feb 14, 2008

You Tube Assyrian Videos up dated Feb 12, 2008

Egypt recognizes Christian converts Feb 12, o8

Archbishop: Iraqi Christians Not Losing Hope Feb 12, o8

Mercy Corps Launches Work in Syria to Assist Iraqi Refugees Feb 12, o8

Compensation for the Confiscated Assyrian Land in Ankawa not Enough Feb 11, o8

The Forced Assimilation Policy of Turkey Continues
Feb 11, o8

Churches in Iraq Becoming Targets for Attacks Feb 8, o8

Kirkuk Referendum and Hermaphrodites Feb 7, o8

For Christians Returning From Syria to Iraq is Fraught with Danger Feb 3, o8

New Star - Prince of Assyria Feb 3, o8

New Defense Authorization Act, will Help More Iraqi Refugees Feb 3, o8

Mess O’Potamian Art at Iraq's Museum Feb 3, o8



December 07 - January 08

October - November 07

August - September 07

June - July 07

May - April 07

February - March 07

December 06 - January 07

October, November 06

August, September 06

June, July 06
March April May 06
February 06
December05 Januray 06