ANS - Go to Home Page
ANS - Salesian iNfo Agency

IT EN ES FR PT PL Standard Version || Text only

Print this page Print   

13/11/2015 - Iraq - Concern for religious minorities

(ANS - Baghdad) - A law on the national identity card, approved by the Iraqi parliament on 27 October, gives cause for concern at international level. The new law provides for the automatic transition of minors to the Islamic religion when even one of their parents converts to Islam.

"This law is one of the most discriminatory, because it is totally disrespectful of the civilization of Iraq. The law represents a threat to the unity of our nation, to religious pluralism and to the principle of acceptance of the diversity of the other" wrote the Chaldean Patriarch Raphael I Louis Sako in a statement released by ‘Aid to the Church in Need’, a Foundation of Pontifical Right.

Christian representatives, supported also by parliamentarians belonging to different factions, had requested an amendment to the text. They wanted to add a sentence to establish that in the event of the conversion to Islam of one parent, the child should remain in the religion to which they originally belonged until the age of 18, when they could choose their religion with freedom of conscience. However, the proposed amendment was not approved.

In recent days, hundreds of members of religious minorities protested outside the headquarters of the UN mission in Erbil asking the President not to approve the law.

Now it will be up to the Iraqi President, Fuad Masoum, to decide whether to approve the text, reject it or ask for amendments.

"If the law comes into force” said the Patriarch Sako, “we will make our voices heard around the world, so that the Assembly of Representatives of Iraq will have to answer before the international court."

Pope Francis has often stressed the importance of religious freedom. On 14 January during his apostolic trip to Sri Lanka he had this to say: "Religious freedom is a fundamental human right. Everyone should be free, alone or in combination with others, to seek the truth, to express his religious beliefs openly, free from intimidation and external constraints."

Published 13/11/2015

comunica ANS news

The latest News
14/3/2016 - RMG – Meeting of the Masters of Novices
14/3/2016 - Brazil – Edu-communication opens up new possibilities for young people
14/3/2016 - India – Green initiatives among kids
14/3/2016 - Philippines – The Rector Major at Don Bosco Boys’ Home
11/3/2016 - RMG – Close to Fr Uzhunnalil, the words of Fr Cereda

News from last week
News from last month