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Parliamentary questions
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26 November 2010
Question for written answer E-9887/2010
to the Commission
Rule 117
Konrad Szymański (ECR)

 Subject: Persecution of Christians in Iraq
 Answer in writing 

The persecution of Christians in Iraq is intensifying. On 31 October 2010 52 people died in an attack on the Catholic cathedral, on 10 November 2010 and three more people were killed and dozens were injured in bomb and mortar attacks on Christians in Baghdad.

At a conference held at the European Parliament on 5 October 2010 the Chaldean Archbishop of Kirkuk, Louis Sako, said that, since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, 51 churches had been attacked, a bishop and three priests had been kidnapped and killed, some 900 ‘innocent Christians’ had died and thousands more had been forced to leave their homes and seek a safe refuge.

This shows that religious freedom, which is a human right enshrined in Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, is extremely limited, in particular for the Christian minority.

How does the Commission intend to guarantee freedom of religious belief and practice for Christians living in Iraq?

What account is it taking of the persecution of Christians in Iraq in the EU common strategy for Iraq for 2011‑13?

As an organisation that champions human rights around the world, should the European Union not pay greater attention to the issue of religious freedom across the world in its day-to-day activities?

Original language of question: PLOJ C 265 E, 09/09/2011
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