Chaldean Patriarch visits liberated Christian towns

Leader of the Chaldean Christian community in Iraq, Patriarch Louis Raphael I Sako, has visited six newly liberated Christian towns of the Nineveh Plain. During the visit to the towns of Bartella, Karmles, Qaraqosh, Teskof, Baqofa and Btnaya, the Patriarch met with and thanked soldiers “who restored the crosses on top of the churches”.

In a message to the Christian communities who fled ahead of the ISIS advance of 2014, he said: “These are our lands and we are ready to return. We wanted to remind everyone of our presence, and I hope that in the near future other bishops will go to visit the area.”

The Patriarch added that despite the “sadness and suffering” inflicted by ISIS, “it is important not to emigrate but remain here in our land”.