The Assyrian Patriarch Pleads to the European Union

8/8/2014 11:31:44 PM

The following letter was sent by His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, The Patriarch of Assyrian Church of the East to His Excellency Martin Schulz, President of the European Union

The urgency of the worsening situation of the Christians in Iraq compels me to make this heartfelt appeal to Your Excellency as President of the Parliament of the European Union. The present atrocities committed against the Christians of Iraq—the Assyrians, Chaldeans, Syriacs and Armenians, particularly in the Nineveh Plains region—and against the other non-Christian peoples such as the Yezidis, Shabaks, Kurds and Turkomen of these areas is worsening by the hour. We have received recent reports from our prelates in Iraq that over 100,000 Christians and others have fled their homes in the numerous villages of the Nineveh Plains and have moved further north in the region of Kurdistan in order to seek shelter and refuge. These villages in the Nineveh Plains are their ancient and ancestral homeland, which they have inhabited for many millennia. These people are left destitute, the vast majority having fled with only the clothes on their back, and without the necessities of nutrition and medical supplies. Children, pregnant women and the elderly are the greatest victims of these atrocities and crimes against humanity—is there no one with a conscience and upright moral standing to hear their plea?

Excellency: the silence and utter apathy of the western nations of the free and civilized world is grossly appalling and morally unacceptable! In my recent letter to His Excellency Ban Ki-Moon, Secretary General of the United Nations dated August 6, 2014, I outlined the plight of the Christian communities and our neighbors in the Nineveh Plains region. What’s more, by now the world is sufficiently aware of the magnitude of this religious genocide. The evil forces of the radical, fundamentalist and unbridled Islamic forces of ‘ISIS’ (now known as ‘IS’) have no mercy on any and all those who are in their way and whom they see as an obstacle to the expansion of their inhumane and uncivilized ideologies. The Union of European nations, which has demonstrated itself in the past to have been a major contributor to promoting peace and security in the modem and civilized world, has been stagnant and quiet about these atrocities committed against thousands of innocent people, who are suffering for the fact that they are peaceful and peace-loving Christians! Does the European Parliament not have the moral obligation, along with the United Nations Organization, to ensure peace and security for those who would otherwise remain helpless and defenseless? This is a question that each and every member-nation of the European Union must ask itself and respond genuinely and sincerely.

In closing, I urge Your Excellency to voice this our letter and the appeal of thousands of victims of displacement, hunger and medical conditions that render these people utterly helpless, in front of the plenary session of the European Parliament as soon as possible. Let all the nations of Europe and the free world recognize and address the modern-day genocide that the Christians and other religious groups are suffering in Iraq. Let the conscience of every nation of Europe which hosts peoples of divers religions into their countries also look with mercy and favor upon these helpless peoples in Iraq. The time to act and to respond to the present situation is short, Your Excellency. Immediate humanitarian aid must be sent to the displaced and the needy. These needs include, but are not limited to, temporary shelters, food, potable water, medicines, infant-needs, etc. I leave this plea with your esteemed office and pray that the plea of our people will touch the heart and conscience of every member of the European Parliament.

Be assured of my prayers for European Parliament and best wishes for your success in fulfilling your mandate as President. Again, I urge Your Excellency to bring this issue to the full session of the European Union Parliament before it is too late, and a whole ancient people are wiped out. May Almighty God, the author of peace and justice, grant His peace to all nations and to all peoples.