Christians fleeing Iraq due to growth in Muslim extremism

.- The EFE News Agency reported this week that persecution against Christians has resurfaced in post-war Iraq and that more believers "feel obliged to flee from the attacks and assaults to which they are being submitted."

EFE reporter Jose Seage reports that "the situation for the faithful of the Assyrian Chaldean Church, the Assyrian Church, and the Syrian or Armenian Catholic Church is not very promising."

A young female identified as Liza who belongs to the Chaldean minority of Aman told EFE that "the best we have been able to do is leave.  We do not want to carry on with our lives with the fear that we will be killed because of our beliefs.  We are not well-liked."

According to the article, "during the regime of Saddam things were not as utopian as would seem.  Freedom of worship existed, but not freedom of religion, and in practice a Muslim was never allowed to convert to Christianity, even though he desired to do so."
Nevertheless now the situation is critical and "Muslim extremism makes peaceful coexistence impossible."

Last August 1 "was without a doubt one of the worst days for Iraqi Christians.  Several car bombs exploded at the same time in five different churches in Baghdad and Mosul.  That day 15 people lost their lives in the attacks carried out by Muslim extremists.  Since then, attacks are occurring on a daily basis in Iraq."

Christian-owned businesses "are the constant object of radical Sunni and Shiite groups who take advantage of little nighttime security in order to try to set them on fire.

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