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Vatican Secretariat of State issues alert to diplomatic corps on plight of Christians in Middle East

Catholic World News - July 30, 2014

The Vatican Secretariat of State has sent a formal note to all the ambassadors accredited to the Holy See, calling their attention to the appeals by Pope Francis for Christians in Iraq and elsewhere in the Middle East.

Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, the Secretary for Relations with States, said that the Holy See is “deeply concerned” with the suffering of Christians in the region. “Christian communities are suffering unjustly, they are scared, and many Christians have been forced to emigrate,” he said.

The archbishop called attention to the historical roots of the Christian communities in countries such as Iraq, where the Church established an active presence long before the rise of Islam. He observed that in Mosul, Mass was not celebrated this past Sunday, for the first time in at least 1500 years. “We strongly hope that the international community will take the question of peace to heart because the principles that form a fundamental basis for human dignity, the respect of every individual’s rights and for a peaceful and harmonious coexistence among people and populations, are at stake,” Archbishop Mamberti said.

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