Call for global effort to liberate areas occuped by IS

The international community and national authorities must work together to liberate those areas occupied by Islamic State as soon as possible, according to an extraordinary synod of the Chaldean Bishops, and should “put in place the necessary measures to protect Christians and other Iraqis, so they all return to their homes and live in safety and with dignity”.

The synod, summoned by Louis Raphael I Sako, Chaldean Catholic Patriarch of Babylon, also called upon Iraq’s national government and the regional Kurdish government to support those families the jihadists had driven from their homes.

The majority of Iraq’s Christians have fled the country since the US-led invasion of 2003, when the Chaldean Church was Iraq’s largest Christian community with roughly 500,000 members.

The synod reaffirmed the Church’s determination to “remain at the side of our suffering people”, doing all in its power to “serve, lift the spirit and sow hope in the hearts”.