December 11, 2011
Recent attacks on Christian-owned businesses in northern Iraq by Muslim mobs have raised questions about the future safety of the country's shrinking Christian population, particularly as U.S. forces withdraw completely, Fox News reports. The attacks have received little international attention, but a Christian member of the Iraqi parliament confirmed that dozens of shops -- many Christian-owned -- were burned and destroyed across multiple cities. "The Iraqi Christians ... are living in fear," said U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.), who is pushing for the creation of a special religious freedom envoy in the region. "Now with the forces leaving ... I think the Iraqi Christians are going to go through a very, very difficult time." Juliana Taimoorazy of the Iraqi Christian Relief Council said it was "disturbing" that the U.S. government had not spoken out against the attacks. "We're on the verge of extinction," she said.