17/06/2020

British Ambassador to Iraq meets with Secretary-General of Beth Nahrin Democratic Party

ANKAWA, Iraq – The British ambassador to Iraq, Stephen Hickey, met with Romeo Hakkari, the Secretary-General of Beth Nahrin Democratic Party, during his visit to the Erbil in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

In their meeting, the two discussed the historic and contemporary injustices suffered by the Chaldean-Syriac-Assyrian (CSA) people in the region, from state oppression and genocide to the threats posed by extremist and terrorist groups.

As an example, the Secretary-General spoke about the attack on Simele by the Iraqi Army in 1933 where more than 5,000 defenseless women, elderly, and children were brutally murdered and the annihilation of the village of Surya in 1969 by the non-patriotic army.

The series of killing and displacement continued with the advent of the Islamic state (ISIS) in 2014, when it destroyed all national, religious, and historic symbols of the CSA people and completely displaced them from their homeland in Nineveh Plains.

It was stressed by Secretary-General Romeo Hakkari that the CSA only have a future in the Middle East if their rights are secured not merely on paper – the regional and national constitution both protect minority rights – not in practice.

Despite CSA rights being enshrined in law, minorities across Nineveh Plains and broader Iraq suffer from widespread discrimination and persecution.

The Secretary-General called on the British government to support the cause of the Chaldean-Syriac-Assyrian people.