Friday, 19 August 2016

Patriarch of Antioch castigates Canada and the West for abandoning Christians in the Middle East

Ignatius Youssef III Younan, Patriarch of Antioch and all the East of the Syriacs, i.e. the head of the Syrian Catholic Church spoke this month in Toronto.  The Patriarch rebuked the West over its “stunning” indifference to the genocide of Christians in the Middle East.

Eighty per cent of Iraq’s Christian population has died, fled, become refugees or, more recently, been killed by Islamic terrorists since 2003. 

 Since the outbreak of Syria’s civil war in 2011, more than half that country’s Christians have been killed or exiled.  Iraq and Syria together had about three million Christians in 2000. Today, more than two million of them are either dead, internally displaced, living destitute in refugee camps or trying to rebuild lives abroad.

 The Patriarch deplored this slaughter of Christian civilians and clergy, the desecration or destruction of more than 140 ancient churches and monasteries, the unknown fate of two archbishops kidnapped three years ago and the ongoing use of civilians as human shields.

As the world watches, radical Islam spreads. The decimation of Christians and other minorities remains fundamental to Islamic radicalism. It is a genocide.

The Patriarch warned that the devastation will continue for as long as the West is willing to “betray its own principles and abandon Christians and other minorities.”
The US and Canadian see-no-evil relationship with Saudi Arabia and some other Islamic nations is at the root of the problem, he insisted. Financing and arming of international Islamic groups has, predictably, produced terrorists, the Patriarch said.

Western complacency and greed, and the abandonment of Christian principles in order to keep Mideast oil flowing is a principal cause of this problem.  Our brother and sister Christians will continue to suffer as long as this selfishness pervades the leadership of Europe and North America.

Western Governments are largely economic opportunists and pander to Middle Eastern regimes which have no interest in retaining Christianity’s 2,000-year presence in the region.  The leadership of the Federal Government in Canada along with other leaders remain silent and inactive as Christian and other communities face annihilation.

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