Keeping Christians in Mideast 'Islamic duty': Muslim leader

VATICAN CITY- Christian presence in the Middle East is a "necessity" and keeping Christians there is "an Islamic duty", the secretary of the Lebanese national committee for Muslim-Christian dialogue said Thursday.
"The Christian presence in the (Middle) East, working and living alongside Muslims, is as much a Christian as an Islamic necessity," Mohammad Sammak said at a Vatican synod conference on Christianity in the region.

Keeping Christians in Mideast 'Islamic duty': Muslim leader
The meeting, which runs until October 24, aims to rally support for Christians in the Middle East where conflicts and intolerance increasingly drive them to emigrate from the religion's region of birth.
The region counts 20 million Christians, including five million Catholics, out of a total population of 356 million people.
"Keeping a Christian presence is a common Islamic duty as much as a common Christian duty," said Sammak, whose country counts the most Catholics in the region.
He also highlighted the role of Christians in Israel and the Palestinian Territories, saying that they were "on the frontline in confronting the (Israeli) occupation and resisting it".

Friday, October 15th 2010

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