An Iraqi priest, Father Douglas Bazi spoke at the #WeareN Congress 2016 at the United Nations, revealed the horrors of his captivity under Islamic State. During this event, he briefed the audience about the plight of the genocide of Christians in Iraq. Followed by this event he went on to speak in a Sacramento church.
The Baghdad-based, Father Douglas Bazi while addressing an brimming crowd at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Chaldean Catholic Church in Orangevale, Sacramento on Wednesday May 4 detailed the quandary of persecuted Christians in Iraq. During his address, he narrated, the dilemma he had to go through, and told that he survived bomb attacks and a kidnapping in 2006.
“They destroyed my car, they blew up my church on front of me. I got shot by AK-47 in my leg. The bullet is still in my leg. And I been kidnapped for nine days. They smash my nose and my teeth by hammer. And they broke one of my back discs.”
He also went on to explain the horrific experience he had during his nine days long captivity. He was released consequently, when is church paid the ransom, but because of continued persecution from Islamic State extremists, he was left with no other option but to flee to Northern Kurdish territory. Christians are safer there, he told. In this region, Father Douglas has been overseeing shelter facility for 400 people who also fled their hometowns due to violence from the ISIS militias.
“To be Christian in Iraq, it’s impossible mission,” Father Bazi said while adding, “But even so, I’m not actually surprised when they attack my people. I’m surprised how my people are still existing.” “Please talk about our stories. Let the world know what happens to us,” he urged the audience.
He told the overcrowded congregation and they expressed astonishment over the fact that there were more than 2 million Christians in Iraq prior to 2003, however, due to mass exodus there are less than 200,000 Christians left in Iraq. Prior to this, the US Secretary of State John Kerry declared a genocide of Christians in Iraq. In March, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry declared what’s happening to Iraqi Christians a genocide. Father Douglas urged the world to pray and support Iraqi Christians.