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Christians Of Iraq


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Popular articles Exodus, Assimilation, Eradication:
Iraq’s minority communities since 2003

A report from Minority Rights Group International.pdf

Translation Translation from English



May 31, 2007


The Reverend Fred Nile has raised concern for the Assyrian community in Iraq and has urged the Federal Government to give support to the establishment of a geographically viable demarcated region in northern Iraq, the provision of additional humanitarian aid and a review of the Australian immigration policy to give priority to persecuted Christians coming to Australia. Rev Nile made the following statement in the NSW Parliament last night; I wish to speak about the establishment of an Assyrian region in Iraq.

Recently I was a guest at, and addressed, the Assyrian Sport and Culture Club. I was very impressed with their efforts on behalf of their suffering countrymen in Iraq. I am very pleased to have received a progress report dealing with the establishment of a geographically viable demarcated region for the Assyrians in northern Iraq. The body that is spearheading this effort in Australia is the Assyrian Universal Alliance, Australian Chapter, which is doing all it can to make sure that the Assyrian voice is being heard by all democratic governments, not only here in Australia but also overseas.

For the past five years the Assyrian Universal Alliance has held several meetings with the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Andrew Downer, and raised Assyrian issues with the Prime Minister of Australia, John Howard. They managed to establish the Assyrian Parliamentary Friendship Group and launched a successful petition in the Federal Parliament in support of establishing a geographically viable demarcated region in northern Iraq for the Assyrians.

On Thursday 24 May this year a delegation comprising the Assyrian Universal Alliance, the Assyrian Church of the East and the Assyrian Australian National Federation undertook an official visit to Canberra to hold a number of meetings with Government officials. The delegates who attended the meetings were very important in representing the Assyrian people in Australia. They included His Grace Bishop Mar Meelis Zaia of the Diocese of Australia and New Zealand of the Holy Apostolic Catholic Assyrian Church of the East; Hermiz Shahen, who is secretary of the Assyrian Universal Alliance; Reverend Father Genard Lazar of the Youth Ministry of the Assyrian Church of the East; Paul Azzo, the organiser of the meeting and an active member of the Assyrian community; and David David, who is the vice-president of the Assyrian Australian National Federation.

The delegation met with Kevin Andrews, the Federal Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, who was supported by one of the senators. During the meeting the delegates congratulated the Minister on his new appointment and expressed sincere gratitude for the magnificent and tireless efforts by the Prime Minister of Australia, the Hon. John Howard, for taking an active part in the process of helping Iraqi people realise a free and peaceful future by fighting terrorism and extremism in the world, particularly in the Middle East. The delegation briefed the Minister on the latest developments in Iraq and the neglect of the Assyrian issue after liberation, the wages of sectarian violence, and the systematic abuse by Islamic extremists against the entire Christian population.

As a matter of urgency and importance, the delegates called upon the Australian Government to take immediate action and lasting measures to address the major humanitarian crisis suffered by the Assyrian refugees. They requested emergency assistance such as food, shelter, education, health care facilities and legal documents for the displaced Iraqi Christians in order to improve their living conditions in the host countries, specifically Jordan, Syria, Turkey and Lebanon, where many Assyrians have been forced to flee to save their lives following murderous threats.

At the conclusion of the meeting the Assyrian Universal Alliance handed an official letter with detailed reports to the Minister and a further letter addressed to the Prime Minister of Australia, the Hon. John Howard, concerning the situation of Christian refugees and the mounting number of threats facing Iraqi Assyrians. Honourable members would know that I have supported that effort and have distributed a petition calling on the Federal Government to review the Australian immigration policy to give priority to Christians coming to Australia, particularly Christians who are being persecuted. I believe that Australia should do more to assist them. I am pleased and proud to support the Assyrian community in seeking support in Iraq as well as in Australia Forward this Message to a friend

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Who are the Christians of Iraq?

Yaar = May

church on fire


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Neesan = April

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February - March 07

December 06 - January 07

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August, September 06

June, July 06
March April May 06
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December05 Januray 06