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Turkey Disrespectful of Christianity and Assyrians: Swedish MPs

12/9/08 Turkey (Assyrian International News Agency) – Two Swedish MPs from the Christian Democratic Party, Mr. Lennart Sacradeus and Ms. Annelie Enochson, expressed in a joint statement concern for the Saint Gabriel monastery in south eastern Turkey, which is being harassed by Muslim Kurds and Turks from the surrounding villages. The villagers have begun a campaign to confiscate one of the last and oldest monasteries in Turkey (AINA 12-2-2008, 9-16-2008).

“We are worried by the judicial process being carried out against the Saint Gabriel monastery in Mydiat,” said the MPs. The Swedish politicians are angered by the court decision to hold proceedings on Christmas day. “The court process is taking place without respect for Christianity, which finds itself in one of its most important holidays. This should be a time of mutual understanding and peace, not of court trials and threats.”

Both Enochson and Sacradeus have put written questions to the Swedish foreign minister concerning the issue. “Our thoughts go to the Christian minority in Turkey, which is exposed to severe strain by the court trial. We know they have been victims of severe atrocities during history and that big groups of Assyrians have been forced to flee to our country to escape Turkey.”