Holy Week celebrations: Iraqi Christians and Muslims march together for peace

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Christians and Muslims in Iraq’s Nineveh Plains march together in the name of peace. Christians and Muslims walked together for 140 km through the Nineveh Plain. Participants of the peace march expressed desire for an end of violence in a once densely populated Christian area. This peace march was organized by the Chaldean Patriarchate.

Christians in Nineveh Plains

The Chaldean Patriarchate had already declared 2017 as “the Year of Peace.” The march was supported in this connection, as Christians and Muslims march together throughout the week calling for an end to violence in the region. This march started in Ankawa, and will continue through Holy Week. After the participants took part in this march after the Palm Sunday services at their churches.

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The march is scheduled to end in Qaradosh, which is about 32km from the city of Mosul. According to an estimate about 100 people from Iraq and other countries are to take part in this march as they walk through these historic lands.

The participants will also offer special prayers for people in this region who have been suffering from violence since long. During this week-long journey, participants will beseech God for rehabilitation of the abandoned towns as well as for provisions so that the victims may overcome all forms of violence.

The area of Nineveh Plain is made up largely of ancient, religious sites. After the advance of the terrorist group Islamic State in 2014, the sites had suffered much damage at the hands of the ISIS militants. The historic architecture and archaeological remains in this region, including Hatra- the UNESCO world heritage site were also destroyed by the ISIS militants. Many towns and villages inhabited by Christians were abandoned soon after ISIS gained control of the region.