His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal Meets Christians Displaced From Iraq

[06-09-2014 04:50 PM]

Ammon News - AMMONNEWS - His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan Bin Talal, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Royal Institute for Interfaith Studies, met with hundreds of Christians uprooted from Iraq in the aftermath of the violence that has rocked that country. During his meeting with the displaced Iraqis at the churches of Mar Elias and the Lady of Peace, HRH emphasized Jordan’s proud tradition of providing a safe haven for persecuted people in the Arab region and from throughout the world.

Prince El Hassan met with people displaced by the violence in Iraq along withthe Ambassador of the Vatican Bishop Giorgio Lengo. HRH said that the violence in Iraq was particularly disturbing as the land was home to one of the world’s most ancient civilizations, and had a history of pluralism where people of all religions lived in harmony since the earliest days of humankind.

“What entwines us Muslims and Christians is a deeply rooted Arab culture and heritage. Your decision to depart from your homeland is a difficult choice, for you are the repository of an authentic Iraqi Christian identity, and your migration renders it difficult to restore this identity which is an underpinning of the Arab and Islamic identity.

His Highness expressed pain at the sudden and shocking displacement of thousands of Christians from Mosul, stating, “We have to stand up and deny the forces of extremism and terrorism that do a profound disservice to the tolerant religion and to the noble principles and ethics of its Prophet, an essential part of whose mission was to consummate high moral and ethical standards.”

His Highness pledged to the displaced Iraqis that their cause, and that of the other Christians of the east, would be the focus of his discussions in his visit to His Holiness the Pope of the Vatican on September 4.

“I wish to remind the Western World that Jesus Christ was born in this Holy Land – a land that has had a proud tradition of furthering the principles of social justice and human dignity.”

Father Ala`a Alamat, director of the Lady of Peace Center and Father George Sharayha, pastor of the Roman Catholic Church emphasized that what is transpiring in Iraq and other countries emphatically does not embody the reality of Christian Muslim relations which are built on harmonious coexistence and sincere fraternity within the framework of the religious teachings of Islam and Christianity.

The Director of the Caritas Jordan Association, Wael Suleiman said that the Catholic Church in Jordan cooperated with Caritas in hosting the exiled Iraqis whose number is expected to reach one thousand people. “The Church, in partnership with the Jordan Hashemite charity organization, along with a number of institutions, associations and individuals in Jordan are working round the clock to fulfill the needs of our Iraqi brothers and sisters,” he said.

His Royal Highness said that it was the duty of every human being to come together and preserve the proud tradition of religious pluralism.

“We have to repay the debt we owe to Mesopotamia,” HRH said.

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