ASIA/IRAQ - Chaldean patriarch to politicians: a "strong coalition government" to remove weapons from sectarian militias is needed

Tuesday, 31 July 2018 middle east   oriental churches   politics   sectaniarism   military   armed groups   corruption   area crisis

Baghdad (Agenzia Fides) - The disastrous situation that Iraq is facing makes the formation of a "strong coalition government" urgent, before "it is too late". And the future rulers will have to immediately face the emergence of armed groups organized on an ethnic-religious sectarian basis that still dictate law in large areas of the Country, reserving the use of weapons "to national army and the federal police", strengthening "the role of the military institutions" and guaranteeing their absolute autonomy with respect to political forces and sectarian groups. These are some of the key points of the letter that Chaldean Patriarch Louis Raphael Sako addressed to all Iraqi politicians, calling into question their responsibility in the face of the political-institutional paralysis in which the Country after the elections of May 12 finds itself in, while the growing discontent - hit by the economic crisis and rationing of water and electricity in a torrid summer - is expressed in street protests and assaults on party seats and buildings of power (such as those recorded in recent weeks in the south of the Country). The Patriarch's letter, articulated in 10 points and also sent to the diplomatic delegations present in Iraq, starts from the fact that the promises of those who in the West justified the US military intervention against Saddam Hussein's regime as a tool to "export democracy" to Iraq have failed. Since 2003 recalls Patriarch Sako, who was created Cardinal by Pope Francis at the Consistory of 28 June - the governments that succeeded in leading Iraq "have failed to adequately build the Country on the right way" and to develop a comprehensive plan to get out of the sequential crises. The scenario described by Patriarch Sako includes not only conflict, violence and terrorism, but also "lack of services, unemployment, the scourge of corruption, the decline of the economy".
Among the ten points submitted to the attention of the Iraqi political forces, the Primate of the Chaldean Church also adds the suggestion to reform the Constitution and the laws, by adopting them to the "principle of citizenship" and absolute ‘rooting’ to the homeland rather than the religious or sectarian affiliation. Patriarch Sako also suggests reducing the number of members of Parliament and prepare them to follow appropriate training programs. (GV) (Agenzia Fides, 31/7/2018)

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