BAGHDAD, Iraq, NOV. 6, 2008 ( The auxiliary bishop of Baghdad wants the president-elect of the United States to govern with the good of all peoples in mind.

This was the appeal made by Bishop Shlemon Warduni after Barack Obama won Tuesday's U.S. presidential election. The prelate extended the same wish to all political leaders.

"We hope President Barack Obama will govern with the good of all peoples in mind," Bishop Warduni told "">AsiaNews. "An invitation that we also send to the world's political leaders that they may strive for peace, prosperity and love between all nations, putting aside divisions and partisan interests."

The bishop urged Obama to "safeguard the good of all" in Iraq, not working just to "win the war," but also to "bring a stable and lasting peace."

Only then can a "true victory" be declared, he said, not only in Iraq, but in all "those areas of conflict."

Ups and downs

The Baghdad prelate also gave an update on the situation of Christians in Iraq, who have been fleeing their homeland by the thousands in recent weeks.

"In October in Mosul alone," he said, "2,500 families were forced to flee, 14 people were killed and three homes destroyed. Despite all of this there are some small signs of hope: Thanks to police and army intervention the situation has changed and over the past few days, over 500 families have returned to the city, while others are preparing to return."

Nevertheless, many aspects remain unresolved, Bishop Warduni lamented, citing the "drama of death and pain of our families" who wait for compensation for the raids carried out against Christians, which meant "guns and rifles pointed at the heads of small children" and the "latent fear" that overshadows the "future of so many people."