Larijani meets Assyrian, Chaldean representatives

02_hj521.jpgTehran Times Political Desk
TEHRAN – Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani met with the representative of the Assyrian and Chaldean Christian communities in Majlis on Saturday.
The secretary generals of the Union of Assyrians in Asia, Europe and the United States were also present at the meeting which was held in the parliament speaker’s office on Saturday.

Iran’s policy has always been to create a peaceful coexistence with religious minorities, and efforts have been made to provide acceptable living condition for Assyrians in the country, Larijani stated.

The parliament speaker also stated that the Iraqi Assyrians were treated unfairly during the Baathist regime of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.

Even after the overthrow of Saddam, the Americans have not acted appropriately either, and the Assyrians are being treated unfairly again, Larijani added.

MP Yonathan Betkolia, the representative of the Assyrian and Chaldean Christian communities in Majlis, thanked the Majlis speaker for providing the opportunity for the secretary generals of the Union of Assyrians to attend the meeting and said the Islamic Republic has always received the Assyrian communities with open arms.

He also stated that the United States and some European countries are just patronizing the Assyrians in Iraq instead of taking practical approaches to deal with the problems facing this minority group.

“We are of the belief that Iran is a model of freedom for other nations, and one fine example of that is the living conditions that the Islamic Republic has provided for the Assyrians in Iran,” Betkolia noted.

The church has always been regarded as a holy place in Iran, and it has never been subject to sacrilegious acts, he added.

The secretary generals also expressed their views on various issues the Assyrian communities are facing across the globe ¨