Sunday, 3 August 2014

Bishops call for Iraqi Christians to be given asylum in Britain

The Observer reports: Bishops urge David Cameron to grant asylum to Iraqi Christians

The Church of England has demanded that the British government offers sanctuary to thousands of Christians fleeing jihadists in northern Iraq, warning that ignoring their plight would constitute a “betrayal of Britain’s moral and historical obligations”.

A number of bishops have revealed their frustration over David Cameron’s intransigence on the issue, arguing the UK has a responsibility to grant immediate asylum to Iraqi Christian communities recently forced to flee the northern city of Mosul after militants from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isis) threatened them with execution, a religious tax or forced conversion.

On Monday, France responded to the so-called religious cleansing by publicly granting asylum to Christians driven from Mosul. The Anglican Church argues the UK has an even greater responsibility to intervene, citing its central role in the 2003 allied invasion, which experts say triggered the destabilisation and sectarian violence that shaped the context for Isis to seize control of much of northern Iraq.

The bishop of Manchester, the Right Rev David Walker, told the Observer: “We would be failing to fulfil our obligations were we not to offer sanctuary. Having intervened so recently and extensively in Iraq, we have, even more than other countries, a moral duty in the UK.

“Given the vast amounts of money that we spent on the war in Iraq, the tiny cost of bringing some people fleeing for their lives to this country and allowing them to settle – and who, in due course, would be an asset to our society – would seem to be minuscule.”…

The story goes on to quote the bishops of Worcester and West Yorkshire and the Dales as well.

On Wednesday, the Archbishop of Canterbury had requested that his homepage photo be changed to the Arabic letter for “N” in solidarity with persecuted Christians suffering in Iraq. See Stand with the Archbishop in solidarity with Iraq’s Christians.

A list of the Christian organisations in Mosul that have been affected by this persecution can be found here: All 45 Christian Institutions in Mosul Destroyed or Occupied By ISIS.

Posted by Simon Sarmiento on Sunday, 3 August 2014 at 9:00am BST | TrackBack
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Categorised as: Anglican Communion | Church of England
Comments

At last!

Posted by: Richard Ashby on Sunday, 3 August 2014 at 9:42am BST

The Bishop of Manchester is spot on in what he says but whose opinion does David Cameron fear most David Walker's or Nigel Farage's?

Posted by: Father David on Sunday, 3 August 2014 at 7:32pm BST

There should be a massive response from Christians in support of this.

Posted by: Helen on Sunday, 3 August 2014 at 10:09pm BST

Inasmuch as the U.S.'s responsibility for the destruction of Iraq is even greater than the UK's, the disaster which is the current U.S. political system {cough *GOP-controlled House of Representatives* cough} makes equivalent U.S. action impossible. Just ask Central American CHILDREN refugees.

God bless this effort in the UK and elsewhere. Lord, forgive the USA its sins . . . WHEN we Yanks get off our butts and elect politicians who don't sin in our names/with our tax dollars. Amen!

Posted by: JCF on Sunday, 3 August 2014 at 10:27pm BST

Whatever next, the Church of England standing up in opposition to the Conservative led Government, well I never did !
Reminds me of nothing more than the heady days when Archbishop Runcie was in charge of the outfit and reports like "The Church and the Bomb" and that well know "Marxist" tome "Faith in the City" so annoyed Maggie Thatcher and her motley crew of Ministers. Now that's what I call opposition.

Posted by: Father David on Monday, 4 August 2014 at 5:46am BST

There is an e petition on the HM Govt site to allow Iraqi Christians asylum. Its got 19 signatures so far - so its a long way from the 100,000 needed to get it debated. Can we support this ( and also spread the word) as an active measure to get the Govt to do something, and support the bishops.

Posted by: Henry Dee on Tuesday, 5 August 2014 at 1:40pm BST
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