ANKAWA, Iraq — In response to the Republican Decree of Iraqi president Abdul Latif Rashid that withdraws the appointment of Chaldean Patriarch Mor Louis Raphael Sako as responsible for the Chaldean Endowment, Chaldeans–Syriacs–Assyrians took to the streets in protest alongside Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian political parties and civil society organizations.
The demonstration, which was organized in front of St. Joseph’s Chaldean Church in Ankawa, Iraq, included the participation of the Bethnahrin Patriotic Union (Huyodo Bethnahrin Athroyo, HBA) and other parties in the city.
Banners were raised in Syriac, Arabic, and English calling on the Iraqi government to revoke the Republican Decree and stop the violations and persecution of the Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian people.
They declared they stand with Patriarch Sako and called on international actors and the United Nations to intervene to protect the property of the Chaldean–Syriac Assyrian people and their Churches.
Several speeches were delivered by political and national parties, all of which indicated that the Iraqi constitution should not be violated. They considered that this decision is a step to displace Christians from their land and paves the way for violating the sanctity of the Chaldean Church, which represents nearly 80% of all Christians in Iraq and the Kurdistan region of Iraq (KRI).
The bell of the Cathedral of Saint Joseph tolls as Ankawa stands strong with Chaldean Patriarch Cardinal Louis Sako against pseudo-Christian Rayan al-Kildani and the Iraqi government’s discrimination attempts.#Iraq
— Julian Bechocha (@JBechocha) July 13, 2023