UN ENVOY IN IRAQ DENOUNCES KIDNAPPING OF CHRISTIAN LEADER
York, Mar 1, 2008 6:00PM The senior United Nations official in Iraq has
condemned yesterday's kidnapping of a Catholic Chaldean archbishop in an attack
in the northern city of Mosul that led to the killing of the religious leader's
driver and two of his bodyguards.
de Mistura, the Secretary-General's Special Representative, "denounces the
continuous kidnapping, killing, and the targeting of religious minorities,"
according to a statement released by his office in Baghdad today.
appalling that these attacks on communities that have lived peacefully together
in north Iraq for centuries are continuing," he said, following the kidnapping
of Monsignor Paul Faraj Rahhu, Archbishop of Mosul.
Mistura called on the Iraqi Government to step up its efforts to protect the
country's minorities and its diversity -- which is enshrined in the national
constitution -- and to preserve human rights.
urged local authorities to play their part in protecting the rights of
minorities and their religious identity, noting that the Archbishop of Mosul was
only the latest in a long line of members of the Christian and other minority
communities in Iraq to be killed, abducted or displaced from their homes.