Catholic Patriarch: Christians used as human shields by the rebels

Hänen Pyhyytensä Syyrian katolinen patriarkka ja kreikkalaiskatolisen melkiittikirkon päämies Gregorios III Laham (غريغوريوس الثالث لحام) on antanut hyvin mielenkiintoisen haastattelun italialaiselle Il Sussidiario -lehdelle. Se kannattaa lukea kokonaan, jos haluaa ymmärtää Syyrian tilannetta. Tässä on muutamia erityisen kiinnostavia kohtia.

On the subject of the Houla massacre, he emphasizes: ”That the government would do that is against logic. The artillery of the Army was outside the village, while the executions were perpetrated by someone inside”.

(…)

Syria is not the battleground for only the government and the opposition, but there is also a third element that aims to subvert the law. Christians are victims of the chaos in the country that was caused by the rebels.

(…)

The rebels use Christian civilians, their neighborhoods and their homes as human shields in their clashes with the Army.

(…)

If Europe wants to save the Syrian Christians, they should promote the peace plan of Kofi Annan. Any alternative plan, as well as the possibility of new sanctions, only undermines the efforts of the UN mediator. The international community has entrusted the mission to Annan and must let him work. The first problem is that Europe, after having given him the mandate, is now against him. That is what keeps the Annan plan from moving forward.

(…)

The truce was violated by the rebels and not Assad. The regime has no interest in making the Annan plan fail. Out of 10 thousand deaths since the beginning of the uprising, there are thousands of casualties among the soldiers. The government must protect the entire country, not just the protesters who are always armed. In the name of the other Syrian bishops as well, I can say that the Army has never attacked an unarmed demonstration. The government does not attack unless attacked. At Houla, 15 soldiers were killed before the massacre, which was not done by those faithful to Assad.

(…)

I cannot imagine that a government and an organized army could kill children like that, especially at a time when it is being watched by the whole world.

(…)

Democracy has nothing to do with it. The origin of the revolt is the local and international desire to destroy Syria. We already had enough democracy, although not one hundred percent, and we were on the way to strengthening it.

(…)

Christians are protected when there is security in the country. Currently however, Syria is in chaos, and not because of the government.

(…)

Then, Benedict XVI has spoken out several times in favor of dialogue in Syria. His voice is the strongest among those who seek a peaceful solution. I can only thank him for this positive and objective position. France, Germany and the United Kingdom, on the other hand, are only capable of lashing out against Assad. The Pope calls for dialogue. If Europe were to follow the line of the Holy Father, the Syrian crisis could reach a solution.

Lähde:
http://www.ilsussidiario.net/News/English-Spoken-Here/Politics-e-Society/2012/6/1/SYRIA-Catholic-Patriarch-Christians-used-as-human-shields-by-the-rebels/286710/

* * *