The year 2011 did not bring respite for Christians and other religious minorities in Iraq as hundreds of thousands of migrants who fled the country are still unwilling to risk returning due to reports of continued discrimination, fear of renewed violence and the government’s apparent inability to protect citizens.
In addition to the lack of life opportunities in Iraq, Assyrian Christians and other minorities experienced a significant rise in hostile acts and riots in the country’s northen region in 2011 compared to 2010, according to a newly released Human Right Watch report. Northern Iraq has traditionally been considered a safe haven for minority groups, but the uptick in violence indicates conditions are changing.
The human rights agency also warned that “Given the huge exodus of minorities and continuing threats and violence in 2011,” there is a probability that Assyrians, an ethnic indigenous minority which is mostly Chrisitan, “may not survive the current conflict and that their unique culture and heritage will slowly disappear from Iraq.”
A young female Assyrian Christian who moved to the United States in 2004 agreed with the reports’ findings. The woman, who agreed to speak with The Christian Post under the condition of anonymity, is a 33-year-old graduate student whose family now lives in northern Iraq – after being chased out of their home in Baghdad.
“Right now, I don’t feel safe and welcome in my own home anymore,” she shared. “Just because they [conservative Muslims] built so much discrimination against us, so much hate.”Continue Reading on global.christianpost.com