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(BosNewsLife) – An ex-White House official and current leader of an influential human rights group urged Iraq ‘s government Thursday, July 28, to urgently start a dialogue with Christians as the parliament prepares to adopt a draft constitution that would make Islam the basis of daily life and laws. Jim Jacobson, who was policy analyst in the White House and is now president of Washington based Christian Freedom International (CFI), said the draft constitution makes clear that Islam is to be “the official religion of the State” and “the main source of legislation.”

Although the draft is still under discussion he expressed concern that its text, which was published this week in the Iraqi Al-Sabah newspaper, is already supported by the conservative Shiite majority in Iraq ‘s parliament. Legislatures are to vote on the draft constitution by August 15 before it goes to a national referendum in October. “Religious minorities, i.e. Christians and women are concerned about how great a role Islam will play in the new constitution, with some fearing a return to the dark ages,” he said in remarks to BosNewsLife.