Iraq’s Christians head for Lebanon

The World

This is a Beirut Chaldian dieses where one Iraqi man has come for help after fleeing Iraq last year after some threatened to kill him and his family. He says Christians in Iraq are targeted for religious reasons. Before the UN invasion, nearly 800,000 Christians lived in Iraq, mostly in Baghdad and relations between the Church and Saddam Hussein were good. This professor says dictators like Saddam Hussein cultivated Christians to work in opposition to radical Muslims and the lack of a Hussein-like figure has allowed extremists to threaten Christians. In Lebanon, Iraqi Christians are treated much like any refugee group: tolerated but not accepted. The Chaldians believe they deserve special refugee status and they’ve been trying to recruit help from Christian organizations worldwide. They’ve been circulating a video in their support. This Christian Iraqi man says the Chaldians were surprised at the poor reception they received here. He says these days many Iraqi CHristians are trying to leave the Middle East all together, and Germany has expressed willingness to absorb some of the refugees and is trying to influence other Europeans to take on some of the refugees as well.

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