Chaldean Patriarchate Denies Approving Emigration of Iraqi Christians

Denies Rumor Patriarch Louis Raphael I Approved Emigration of 13,000 in Canada, Germany

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While the path of emigration is always a personal decision and will not be judged, it cannot be justified by referring to approvals the Church never made.

So says the Patriarchate of Babylon of the Chaldeans, according to Fides after an official statement from the patriarchate was published. The statement denyed allegations that Patriarch Louis Raphael I approved the emigration of 13,000 Iraqi Chaldean Christians in Canada and Germany.

“These strange statements,” the statement issued by the patriarchate’s official media notes, are “completely unfounded.”

The patriarchate, it adds, advocates the same position on the exodus of Christians from Iraq as it did before, namely that all people have full freedom to leave the country, which continues to be devastated by sectarian conflicts and Islamic extremists.

Moreover, the patriarchate’s statement reaffirms it neither binds anyone to stay for moral obligations, nor encourages people to leave. 

The situation in Iraq deteriorates daily. Last week, elderly Christians were expelled from an Iraqi village for refusing to convert to Islam.

The Chaldean Patriarch reaffirms the Pope would be safe if he came to Iraq and says a papal visit would strengthen the persecuted community.

Pope Francis has said on different occasions that he has an interest in visiting Iraq and is prepared to go.

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