Making Iraq Safe for Christianity
"More than 1,000 Christian families in Baghdad have been threatened by Islamic guerrillas for having refused to convert, pay the tax on non-Muslims and to offer a daughter in marriage to a Muslim according to the international NGO, Portes Ouvertes. According to the organization, "there is a campaign underway in the Doura quarter (southeast Baghdad) to oust Christian residents. Refusing to submit to the militias, Christians have no choice but to flee, abandoning all their possessions. Some have gone to Kurdistan while others to Jordan and Syria. Local estimates say that half the country's Christians, a community that once numbered 1 million, have left the country.
According to Mar Dinka IV, head of the Assyrian Church, and the Patriarch of Babylon, Emmanuel Delly, of the Chaldean Church, "Christians are the victims of blackmail, kidnappings and forced displacements, especially in areas controlled by the "Islamic State of Iraq." [L'Orient-Le Jour]
Well, the Islamic State of Iraq must be in charge of Mosul...
Two Christians were murdered in Mosul on Tuesday. The pair was killed in the Nour quarter, where a Chaldean priest and three deacons were murdered on June 3rd.
Five teachers and three Christian students travelling aboard a minibus were kidnapped Wednesday morning along a highway linking Mosul with Qaraqosh, where they resided. The bus was surrounded by "several vehicles" and the hostage takers read a list of those who had to get off the bus. The police watched the entire event unfold but did not intervene.