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Syrian bishop favors government action to quash rebellion

Catholic World News - June 15, 2011

A Syrian Catholic bishop has spoken out strongly in favor of the Assad regime, saying that the government must act decisively to curb a rebellion that could lead to the “destabilization and Islamization” of the country.

Bishop Antoine Audo of Aleppo told Aid to the Church in Need that the rebels challenging the Assad regime are not seeking democratic rule. If the uprising succeeds in overthrowing the current government, he said, the result would be chaotic, and particularly dangerous to the Christian religious minority.

“We do not want to become like Iraq,” said Bishop Audo. “We don’t want insecurity and Islamization, to have the threat of Islamists coming to power.”

“Syria has a secular orientation,” the bishop said, and should fight to keep it. “Syria must resist—will resist,” he said. “Eighty percent of the people are behind the government—as are all the Christians.”

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