Mosul, 8 Oct. (AKI) – Three Christians have been killed in the past 24 hours in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul, the Voices of Iraq news agency reported on Wednesday, quoting police sources.
A Christian man and his father were both shot dead on Tuesday at their workplace in a northern district of Mosul.
Also on Tuesday, unknown gunmen forced their way into a pharmacy in an eastern neighbourhood of Mosul and killed a Christian who worked there, VOI said.
Extremists killed a man and his father in September in Mosul, which is the capital of the Nineveh Governorate, located some 400 kilometres to the north of the capital, Baghdad.
The city is home to the second-largest community of Christians in Iraq after Baghdad. Iraq’s Christian minority is persecuted by Al-Qaeda in Iraq and by Shia militias.
Iraq is home to the Chaldean Catholic Church, one of the oldest Christian churches in the world, but hundreds of thousands of Christians have been forced to flee Iraq to escape the violence and the economic crisis caused by the war.
There are now around 700,000 Christians in Iraq, compared with over a million before the US invasion in 2003, according to censuses carried out by the country’s dioceses.
The Chaldean Church, European churches and aid organisations have been pushing for European Union countries to accept Christian refugees from Iraq.
Christian communities within Iraq are divided over the issue of immigration, which has severely reduced their numbers amid fears one of the world’s oldest Christian communities could disappear.