Syria and Iraq: a new appeal of the Community of Sant’Egidio on the dramatic situation of Christians

The facts of recent days and the kidnapping of the two Italian aid workers, Greta Ramelli and Vanessa Marzullo, which took place in Aleppo, confirm the severity of the situation and the urgent need for international intervention, already expressed by Andrea Riccardi

The Community of Sant’Egidio expresses its deepest concern about the dramatic situation of Christians in Syria and Iraq, which is getting worse every day with new terrible news: the siege of the city of Aleppo where a consistent Christian community lives, increasingly hostage of the clash between rebels and government forces.

Extremely worrying is then the kidnapping of the two Italian aid workers, Greta Ramelli and Vanessa Marzullo, which took place in Aleppo, where they were to bring food and medical aid to the population exhausted.

The Community of Sant’Egidio endorses Andrea Riccardi’s concern, shared by thousands of people and many personalities from the worlds of politics and culture who, about a month ago, launched a strong appeal for Aleppo, so that the international community mobilises to stop the slow death of that city. “We need an international intervention to liberate Aleppo from the siege – proposes Riccardi. Humanitarian corridors and supplies to civilians must be provided, and the end of the fighting must be addressed to the bitter end”.

In Iraq, the ISIS jihadists have won Qaraqosh, taking prisoners hundreds of young women of the minority Yazidi and scaring away tens of thousands of Christians, many of whom have fled Mosul. The Community expresses its full solidarity with the Chaldean Patriarch, Sako, who yesterday launched a dramatic appeal to protect the thousands of Christians fleeing from the plain of Nineveh.

The Community of Sant’Egidio will continue to strive so that reflection, memory and especially concrete action at the international level grow so that the extremely serious situation of Christians in Syria and Iraq may be ended.

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