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House Amends Funding Bill to Help Iraqi Christians

Associated Baptist Press

(BP) – The U.S. House of Representatives has amended a funding bill in to bring focus attention to the postwar plight of Iraqi Christians. The amendment was added to the Foreign Relations Authorization Act on a voice vote. It asks the Bush administration to work with the United States Agency for International Development and use funding for welfare, education and resettlement of Iraq ‘s Christian minority. The House then passed the bill, H.R. 2601. Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) (a Chaldo Assyrian Christian) sponsored the amendment. “If a fully functioning and sustainable democracy is to emerge in Iraq , the basic rights and needs of all minority groups must be safeguarded,” Eshoo said while offering the amendment. Up to 80,000 Iraqi Christians have fled Iraq since Hussein’s fall. “This ongoing exodus is deeply disturbing, and unless action is taken now to address the pressing needs of these indigenous Christians, we may well witness the complete loss of the Iraqi indigenous Christian community,” Eshoo said.