Home > Archives > 09 - 2004 > «Faced with this attack I can only raise my eyes to heaven and pray God for the brothers who aimed to kill us»
IRAQ
from issue no. 09 - 2004

Emmanuel Delly, Patriarch of Babylonia of the Chaldees

«Faced with this attack I can only raise my eyes to heaven and pray God for the brothers who aimed to kill us»




«I am distraught, but I pardon these our brothers who have killed so many Iraqis like themselves. God pardons them and meanwhile I pray that they be enlightened. But we, in any case, will never leave this country: we are just one family, Christians and Muslims, one large family». These are words of His Beatitude Emmanuel III Delly, Patriarch of Babylon of the Chaldees, spoken in the course of an interview printed in la Repubblica on 3 August, in which the Patriarch commented on the attacks against the Iraqi churches on Sunday 1 August. In the interview he recalled that moment: «A sudden pain. I was celebrating mass in a small church in Al-Mansur when they told me of the two car bombs in Baghdad. Half an hour later the car bombs in Baghdad were four and those in Mosul two. At that hour our churches were full of faithful. What fault had these faithful? Only that of being Christians. And now many families have lost their women, their children, their husbands. They lost everything on a Sunday afternoon that we Christian Iraqis will never forget». Finally, to a question about the origin of the attacks Delly answered: «I examine the facts and I say that there was a carefully studied plan, a coordinated plan. It was certainly Islamic extremists who burned the liquor stores of Christians in the last weeks and months, but faced with this attack I can only raise my eyes to Heaven and pray God for the brothers who aimed to kill us».


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