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Gun battle outside Iraqi archbishop's residence

Catholic World News - January 11, 2012

A terrorist attack was thwarted by police and private security guards outside the residence of the Chaldean Catholic Archbishop of Kirkuk, Iraq, on January 11.

The armed men assaulted the residence of Archbishop Louis Sako in the early afternoon. Security guards and police—who were nearby on the busy city street—returned fire. Two terrorists were killed and one was arrested in an exchange of gunfire; five police officers were wounded.

Officials believe that the terrorists might have intended to assassinate a member of the Iraqi parliament who lived nearby, and whose home had been the object of another attack earlier in the week.

Archbishop Sako, who had recently returned home after a parish visit, was unharmed. But the attack increased the feelings of insecurity among the members of Kirkuk’s embattled Christian minority, as well as the fears of wider violence in Iraq.

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