Praying for a peacemaker: What do Iraq’s elections mean for the remaining Christians?

A boy recently returned to his home in the Nineveh plains, looks out over the remains of Karamles (WWM May 2017)
Iraqis go the polls on Saturday (12 May) for the first time since the military defeat of Islamic State, whose campaign of terror against non-Muslims pushed thousands of the country’s last Christians to flee their homeland. Only about 200,000 to 300,000 Christians are thought to remain in Iraq now, mostly . . . Read More

Iraq’s Assyrian Christians: persecution and resurgence

Iraq’s Assyrian Christians: persecution and resurgence
Samir Gedhya never wanted to leave his home in Qaraqosh for the unknown, even when the Islamic State group was almost at his doorstep, sweeping through the towns of Iraq. As the menace to Qaraqosh loomed, his eldest son Faraj, then 16, decided to flee to France, entering by a . . . Read More

Mosul Christmas Mass hailed a ‘victory over IS’ as Sunni youth install giant Christmas tree

Christmas 2017 in Iraq The celebration of a first mass in Mossul (Mosul) since 2014. His Beatitude Raphael Sako and Bishop Shlemon Warduni (from the Chaldean Church) are presiding the Mass. Archbishops Mouche (Syriac Catholic) and Abp Nicodemus Dauod Matti Sharaf (Syriac-Orthodox) were participating. Muslim representatives were present at the celebration.
The celebration of a Christmas Eve Mass in Mosul after the city’s devastating three-year occupation by Islamic State (IS) marked “a kind of victory” over the extremists, a church leader there said. And the installation of a number of large Christmas trees around the city was unprecedented, said the leader, . . . Read More

Opposition to Iraqi enclave for non-Muslims voiced by Erbil diocese

Opposition to Iraqi enclave for non-Muslims voiced by Erbil diocese
The Catholic Church in northern Iraq has voiced its opposition to suggestions that an enclave should be created to safeguard non-Muslims fearful of returning to live among their Muslim neighbours. However Stephen Rasche, aid co-ordinator for the Catholic diocese of Erbil in northern Iraq, also said that the likelihood of . . . Read More

Iraq’s Mosul Archbishop had to pay ‘protection money’ before his 2008 kidnap and death

Iraq’s Mosul Archbishop had to pay ‘protection money’ before his 2008 kidnap and death
The Chaldean Archbishop of Mosul, who was murdered by militias in 2008, paid protection money to safeguard his clergy for years before his kidnapping and death, an aide has told World Watch Monitor. Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho was abducted in February 2008 from the northern Iraqi city of Mosul, which . . . Read More