Chaldean Patriarch: ‘A government responsible for saving Iraq from crisis’

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by Louis Raphael Sako*
For the end of Ramadan festival, Mar Sako addresses a message of good wishes to Muslim brothers and sisters. He expresses hopes that winning parties in the recent elections will take responsibility, overcome allegations of fraud and promote unity for an executive that moves towards reconciliation, peace, stability and reconstruction.

Baghdad (AsiaNews) – A sacrifice “for the good of Iraq”, an assumption of responsibility “to save the country from the current political and social crisis”, guaranteeing the creation of an executive “capable of representing all citizens”: This is what the Chaldean patriarch Mar Louis Raphael Sako – who will receive a cardinal’s hat on June 29 – asks in a message published on the site of the Chaldean patriarchate on the occasion of the feast of Eid-al-Fitr celebrating the end of Ramadan, and shared with AsiaNews. Against the accusations of fraud and irregularities that have stained the May 12 vote, the primate of the Iraqi Church hopes for a “significant step towards reconciliation, peace, stability and reconstruction”.

Mar Sako also sends his best wishes to the Muslim community, which celebrates the end of the holy month of fasting and prayer. My most sincere wish – underlines the Chaldean patriarch, who since his time as Archbishop of Kirkuk has deep ties with Shia and Sunni personalities – is that God can infuse many blessings on beloved Iraq and make it ever more prosperous and peaceful.

Here is the complete text of the message of Patriarch Sako for the end of Ramadan:

Patriarch Louis Raphael Sako

In my name and on behalf of the Church community, it gives me great pleasure to extend my sincere congratulations to our Muslim sisters and brothers, on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr al-mubarak with a heartfelt wishes that may God bless our beloved Iraq and prosperity and peace returns.

Now, that you are celebrating this specific and religious feast after a month of fasting, self-control as well as practicing mercy, forgiveness, and reconciliation, seeking God’s “face” in blessings, I would like to call upon the winning lists of 2018 Iraqi Parliament Election (regardless of their affiliation) to sacrifice for the love of Iraq and Iraqi people, in bearing their national and historical responsibility and do their best in saving our country from its’ current “dangerous” political and social crisis caused by the election. Thus, the problem of fraudulent votes should be solved, otherwise, it will lead Iraq to a constitutional vacuum and an unknown future.

Hence, I am calling all of them to get together around “one table”, and having a courageous dialogue to prepare a realistic and comprehensive program for the “elected” government, in accordance with the prioritized objectives and national issues; find a clear mechanism for its implementation; and especially to speed up the forming of a “patriotic” government, a government that represents all Iraqis, a government based on law, integrity and deeds rather than on speeches, a government that improves services, such as electricity, water, roads and helps in reconstructing what have been destroyed.

Meanwhile we, as Iraqis, are “eagerly” awaiting for this initiative to open an important page in our life towards true reconciliation, peace, stability and reconstruction, Christians in all churches are praying these days to have a strong National Government that can lead Iraq to the port of peace and unity.

I wish you a happy Eid El-Fitre

* Chaldean Patriarch of Baghdad and president of the Iraqi Episcopal Conference‘A-government-responsible-for-saving-Iraq-from-crisis’-44179.html