The Slow and Silent Extinction of Christians in Iraq

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A report published in June 2020 by Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) points to the risk of extinction of Christians in Iraq, and especially in the Nineveh Plain.
If Christians are an endangered species in Iraq, it is not the fault of Covid-19, but that of the viruses of indifference and religious persecution: the report published last June by the ACN is enlightening on this subject.

“If the international community does not intervene immediately, forced migration, in the space of 4 years, could reduce the Christian population by 80% compared to the exodus before the aggression of the Islamic State,” warns ACN, the Pontifical Foundation of the Catholic Church dedicated to the protection of persecuted Christians.

The document mentions the possible return of the Islamic State organization and accuses the aggressive activity of the Shiite militias. 69% of the Christians questioned envisage forced migration, in order to stay alive, and 24% say they have suffered harassment from the Islamists –the suitcase or the coffin.

If the situation remains worrying, all is not yet lost: the ACN observes that thanks to the long-term recovery plan undertaken by the foundation with other organizations, 45% of Christian families have returned to the Nineveh Plain despite the difficulties.

A new phase of recovery is currently underway. It remains to be seen whether the fury of the persecutors—to which is added the indifference of the West—will sweep away the hopes of Christians on the banks of the Tigris and Euphrates.