A car bomb exploded outside a Catholic church in central Kirkuk, Iraq, early Tuesday, wounding at least 20 people, authorities said.
The attack took place in Kirkuk’s Shatterlo neighborhood around 5:30 a.m. (10:30 p.m. Monday ET), according to a police official who spoke to CNN on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.
Anti-Christian violence in Iraq left 92 dead and 47 wounded in 2010, making the year the worst to date for the Christian minority, according to the human-rights group Hammurabi.
Hammurabi reports that all of Iraq’s Christian churches have been badly hurt by violence and by the emigration of families leaving the country to find security elsewhere. More than 800 Christians have been killed in the years since the start of the US-lead military intervention.
Nevertheless the group found that the Christians remaining in Iraq who a strong sense of commitment. On July 4 the Chaldean Catholic Partiarch Emmanuel III paid a courtesy call on Ali al Sistani, Iraqi’s leading Shi’ite cleric, to demonstrate ‘the unity of Iraq and of Iraqis, Muslims and Christians.”
His body was mutilated. His head was nearly severed off. He was tortured before he was executed, according to the Kirkuk police. His eyes were gouged out, his ears were cut off and his faced was skinned. There also were signs of dog bites on the body.
Mr. Jacob is survived by his wife and three children.
He was an Assyrian construction worker.
His body was found like this:
I have no words. How someone can be so cruel against another human being escapes my understanding. But that the reason is just that he believes in other religion is horrible. Plainly horrible.
The world remains silent before the abyss… 😡
Photo: found at AINA.org.
- Iraq: Christian beheaded by his kidnappers (teaandpolitics.wordpress.com)
The decapitated body of a Christian man has been discovered in Kirkuk, northern Iraq, a few days after he was kidnapped. Ashur Yacob Issa, 29, was abducted late Friday night or early Saturday morning (13 or 14 May) and his mutilated body was discovered last Monday morning (16 May).
His family had been asked for a ransom but was not able to pay the sum of more than £61,500 the kidnappers demanded.
Speaking to Aid to the Church in Need, the charity for persecuted and other suffering Christians, Archbishop Louis Sako of Kirkuk condemned the killing, and went on to pay tribute to the strength and faith of his community despite the continuing threat of violence.
Archbishop Sako said: “In all these years, I have never heard of a single Christian converting to Islam, despite the many threats.”
A MIDLAND IT graduate posted messages on an extremist website which called on Muslims to attack British MPs who voted in favour of the war in Iraq.
Bilal Zaheer Ahmad, of Dunstall Hill, Dunstall, Wolverhampton, is expected to receive a lengthy prison sentence when he comes before a High Court judge at Nottingham Crown Court on Thursday.
The 23-year-old pleaded guilty to soliciting murder, inciting religious hatred and three counts under Section 58 of the Terrorism Act – which covers distributing information about members of the armed forces – on May 13.
A police source said that Ahmad listed the pro-war politicians on the website and urged other would-be fanatics to “raise the knife of jihad” against them.
The source said that he even offered advice on finding out details of politicians’ constituency surgeries to help anyone who wanted to target them.
An Iraqi refugee living in the U.S. told an FBI informant he used improvised explosive devices in insurgent attacks on American troops in Iraq and is accused of trying to send sniper rifles and Stinger missiles to his home country, according to a sworn statement.
The refugee, along with one of his recruits, was arrested and is accused of trying to send the weapons and money to al-Qaida operatives in Iraq.
Waad Ramadan Alwan, 30, was well-schooled in sniper rifles and improvised explosive devices, according to an FBI affidavit released Tuesday.
“If I can get to Iraq, can you send me a sniper rifle?” Alwan asked the informant. “I want one so I can shoot from far away.”
Pope Benedict XVI has established a Chaldean Catholic eparchy in Canada, and appointed Archbishop Hanna Zora as its first bishop.
The establishment of a new ecclesiastical jurisdiction reflects the continued emigration of Chaldean Catholics from Iraq and Iran. There are now nearly 40,000 Chaldeans living in Canada, many of them having fled Iraq in the past decade. Archbishop Louis Sako of Kirkuk, Iraq, told Vatican Radio that while Chaldeans there welcomed the news of the new eparchy, “we are a little saddened by the continuing exodus from our land, where the Church has been present since the 5th century.”