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Iraqi bishop says voting is a moral duty

"Voting is a national and religious duty" for the people of Iraq, the Chaldean Catholic archbishop of Mosul has told the Rome-based AsiaNews service.

Archbishop Louis Sako said in an interview, "At Mass, in the homily, we tell people to go and vote."

He said Sunday's election will be "something immense and new" for Iraq, giving the country's people their first chance to elect their own political leaders.

The Chaldean archbishop recognised the dangers that will accompany the national elections.

"There are, of course, people who are frightened by threats," he observed.

His Syrian Catholic counterpart, Archbishop Basile Casmoussa, was kidnapped last week by Islamic activists who evidently wanted to force a quick US withdrawal from Iraq. But Archbishop Sako argued against an immediate American withdrawal, saying that such a move could lead to civil war in his country.

Iraqi prelate says voting is a moral duty (Catholic World News 26/1/05)

Iraqi elections: an overview ( 26/1/05)
More than 16,000 Iraqis go to the polls in Jordan ( 27/1/05)
Chaldean community upset by lack of Iraqi polling sites, says priest (Catholic News Service/Catholic Online 26/1/05)
Chaldean community upset by lack of Iraqi polling sites, says priest (Catholic News Service 26/1/05)
Christ, the foundation and goal of ecumenical commitment (Vatican Information Service 26/1/05)
Chaldean Bishop of Kirkuk: What Iraq Is Like on Eve of Elections (Zenit 26/1/05)

28 Jan 2005