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ICC note: Muslims ‘cleaning house’ is costing the lives of our brothers and sisters.

7/5/07 Baghdad (Asia News) – They were fleeing from Baghdad and from the daily death threats, but they were abducted on the road to Kirkuk. This is what happened this morning to 4 Chaldean Christians, according to reports from Asia News sources in the area. The Christians are Georges Isaak, his son Stuart, as well as Shaqat Youssif and Martin Yacoub. The abduction took place in the vicinity of the town of Salman Beck, 120 kilometres to the south of Kirkuk.

The four men were trying to reach their village, called Daiabun, near Zakho in Iraqi Kurdistan. Terrorists had threatened several times to kill them if they did not leave the capital. Religious authorities in the area are trying to contact the abductors.

For months now in Baghdad the dynamics and the content of the threats against the Christians is the same: either convert or abandon everything without taking anything with them. “In the context of a complete absence of rules and of respect for authority,” reports a source of Asia News which has asked to remain anonymous, “criminals do what they want: they can threaten, abduct, kill.” After having “cleansed” the Dora quarter, the terror campaign aimed at forcing the Christians to flee has now taken aim at the areas of Alameria and Hai-Aljameea.

On the other hand, violence and abductions also strike Sunnites and Shiites indiscriminately. At this point, the only possibility of saving oneself is, for those who can, to flee. In mid June, after the second attack on the Golden Mosque of Samarra, unofficial estimates talked of 400 Muslim families fleeing from Baghdad, out of the fear of reprisals and of fresh sectarian violence, in one week alone.