A shared suffering for the dramatic situation of Christians in the Middle East, especially in Iraq and Syria. This is the joint declaration signed by the Pope and the Catholikos Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East, Mar Gewargis III, at the end of the audience a few days ago.
“Hundreds of thousands of innocent men, women and children are suffering immensely from violent conflicts that nothing can justify. To be together with our brothers and sisters who are persecuted to be the voice of those who have no voice. We want to affirm once again that it is not possible to imagine the Middle East without Christians. This conviction is based not only on religious motives, but also on social and cultural reality, since Christians, with other believers, make a great contribution to the specific identity of the region: a place of tolerance, mutual respect and acceptance. The Middle East without the Christians would no longer be the Middle East.”
“Walls and power games will not lead to peace, since true peace can only be achieved and preserved through mutual listening and dialogue,” the proposal contained in the text, which once again calls on the international community to “promote political solutions that recognize the rights and duties of all parties involved,” starting with the “need to guarantee the rights of every person.”
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