Baghdede Association in Michigan commemorates end of 40-day mourning period for wedding fire tragedy with demands for justice

BAGHDEDE, Iraq / MICHIGAN, U.S. — Marking the conclusion of the 40-day mourning period for the devastating fire at the Al-Haytham Wedding Hall in the Nineveh Plains town of Baghdede (Qaraqosh / Hamdaniya), Iraq, that killed over 130 members of the Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian community, the Baghdede Association in Michigan, U.S., organized a ceremony in commemoration with the martyrs of the incident.

The event, held at the Mashreq Club in Sterling Heights, drew a diverse gathering, including Chaldean Archbishop of Alqosh Michael al-Maqdisi, priests, nuns, members of the Iraqi Society for Human Rights, representatives from national organizations and parties, as well as prominent cultural and literary figures.

The ceremony began with heartfelt prayers for the souls of the martyrs, followed by a documentary screening chronicling the history of Baghdede and the tragic fire that claimed the lives of numerous Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian individuals.

Throughout the event, impassioned speeches echoed demands for justice, including calls for redressing the rights of the martyrs. Attendees advocated for a thorough, internationally supervised investigation to unveil the true causes of the tragedy, holding the negligent accountable. Additionally, there were appeals for the withdrawal of all armed factions, their replacement with regular forces, and concerted efforts to protect the people of Baghdede while keeping the region insulated from political conflicts.

The commemoration served not only as a poignant reflection on the tragedy but also as a platform for the community to voice its collective call for justice, transparency, and lasting peace in the region.