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Orthodox, Catholic prelates in Syria condemn US air strike

April 16, 2018

The Orthodox and Catholic patriarchs of Antioch have united in condemnation of the US air strikes on their country, saying that the attacks were “brutal aggression” and “a clear violation of the international laws.” The patriarchs charged that the strikes were a violation of the UN charter, since they constituted an “unjustified assault on a sovereign country.”

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The Christian leaders argued that claims the Syrian government had used chemical weapons against its own people were “unjustified and unsupported by sufficient and clear evidence.” The military action, they added, interfered with efforts to establish responsibility for the chemical attack.

“This unjust aggression encourages the terrorist organizations and gives them momentum to continue in their terrorism,” the patriarchs said.

The patriarchs urged all Christians to “condemn this aggression and to call their governments to commit to the protection of international peace.”

The statement was signed by Syrian Orthodox Patriarch Ignatius Ephrem II, Greek Orthodox Patriarch John X, and Melkite Catholic Patriarch Joseph Absi of Antioch.


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  • Posted by: Archpriest - Apr. 16, 2018 7:21 PM ET USA

    As chair of the Committee for Eastern Catholics in the Armed Forces of the U.S.& Canada, and retired dean of Eastern Catholic chaplains, I take exception to my own Melkite patriarch and other patriarchs for their vilification of the surgical air strikes against the illegal and immoral chemical weapon production facilities. This politically motivated condemnation is hurtful to eastern Catholics serving in our armed forces. I ask the patriarchs, are you shepherds to all or apologists for Assad?

  • Posted by: Lucius49 - Apr. 16, 2018 7:15 PM ET USA

    Well if according to them, the chemical attack were "proved" would the air strikes be okay? It's easy to criticize the USA but do these same prelates opposed the dictator in any way? Would they have condemned the chemical attack if it were proved according to them? What does the UN say about crimes against humanity which chemical warfare is?