Dozens of illegal expropriations denounced by Christian landowners to the ad hoc Committee wanted by Muqtada al Sadr

Publication Date: 1/2/2021

Source: Agenzia Fides

There are already dozens of complaints to be studied on the working tables of the special committee set up at the request of Iraqi Shiite leader Muqtada al Sadr to collect and verify news and complaints regarding cases of illegal expropriation of property suffered in recent years by Christian landowners in different parts of Iraq.

This was confirmed by Hassan al Kaabi, Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives and representative of the political coalition headed by Muqtada al Sadr. Informing the local means of communication of the work of the Committee, Hassan al Kaabi confirmed that the members of the body have started the on-the-spot verification of the complaints received, including through on-site visits carried out in various Iraqi provinces in order to collect testimonies from local communities and to be able to confirm cases of unlawful expropriation of real estate suffered by Christian owners. In the statements released to the media, the Shiite representative also confirmed that the Committee's action will aim to protect not only the injured rights of the "Christian brothers", but also those of the "Mandaean brothers", a religious minority that had appealed directly to Muqtada al Sadr to ask to also benefit from the initiative set up for the benefit of local Christian communities.

The establishment of the Committee for the protection of land and houses illegitimately stolen from Christian landowners was announced at the beginning of 2021. On those days, as reported by Agenzia Fides (see Fides 4/1/2021), the names of the collaborators of Muqtada al Sadr chosen as members of the Committee were indicated, as well as the e-mail addresses and Whatsapp accounts to which the Christians could send ownership documents concerning real estate - houses and land - illegally expropriated in recent years by other people or groups of people.

The intention of the operation launched by the Shiite leader is to restore justice and end violations of the property rights of the "Christian brothers", including those for which members of the Shiite movement led by al Sadr were responsible.

The request to report cases of illegal expropriations suffered was also addressed to families of Christians who have left the country in recent years. Complaints about abuse against Christian property owners can be sent to the committee by the end of next Ramadan.

The phenomenon of the illegal stealing of buildings from Christians has also been able to gain a foothold thanks to the connivance and cover-up of corrupt and dishonest officials who put themselves at the service of impostors or organized groups of fraudsters. The "legalized" theft of property from Christian families is closely linked to the mass exodus of Iraqi Christians following US military interventions to end Saddam Hussein's regime. Scammers take over empty homes and buildings with the predictable fact that none of the homeowners will return to claim ownership.


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