Archbishop kidnapped in Iraq

A Chaldean Catholic archbishop was kidnapped in Mosul earlier today. According to reports gunman killed three people in abduction of the archbishop, who was taken after celebrating a Mass at a local church.

According to the Associated Press report:

“An aide to Iraq’s Cardinal Emmanuel III Delly, leader of the church, said he did not know who was behind the kidnapping of the 65-year-old archbishop.

‘We pray for his release as soon as possible,’ said Archbishop Andreos Abouna. ‘This act of abduction against a Christian clergy member will increase our fears and worries about the situation of Christians in Iraq.’

Last year’s International Religious Freedom Report from the U.S. State Department noted that Chaldean Catholics comprise a tiny minority of the Iraqi population, but are the largest group among the less than 1 million Christians in mostly Muslim Iraq.

Since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003, Iraqi Christians have been targeted by Islamic extremists who label them ‘crusaders’ loyal to U.S. troops.”

Read the rest here.

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