Demands for increased legal protections by Chaldeans–Syriacs–Assyrians in Iraq grow

ANKAWA, Iraq — The Beth Nahrin Patriotic Union (HBA) of Iraq demanded the issuance of effective laws to protect the property of the Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian people.

Chairman of the HBA Youssef Yaqoub Matti called for the adoption of effective laws to protect the property of Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrians and other Christian peoples throughout Iraqi to help reverse trends of disenfranchisement and displacement in the country which have worsened since 2005.

In statements made to BasNews, Matti commented that the current Iraqi government, like the preceding governments, have contributed to the dwindling of the Christian presence in Iraq due to their failure to take the necessary measures to protect minority rights. Matti also indicated that behind the seizure of minority property are racist and sectarian goals.

Most Iraqi Christians intend to leave the country due to deliberate marginalization and no meaningful intervention by the government, he continued.

Former Member of Iraqi Parliament Joseph Sliwa told BasNews that, “An estimated 60,000 properties, including commercial and residential holdings, belonging to Chaldeans–Syriacs–Assyrians have been seized in central and southern Iraq.”

Sliwa stated that the protests which began in October 2019 had provided a glimmer of hope to all Iraqis, including the Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian people and other Christians, that the situation in the country might change for the better. Many Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrians were martyred by security forces and Iranian-backed militias in the protests alongside their compatriots from other ethnic and religious groups.

The Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian people of Iraq should be granted a constitutional territory and local autonomy such as the Kurdistan Region in northern Iraq, said Siwa.