Last Update 22:22
Wednesday, 24 July 2019

Russia's Lavrov says crimes against Mideast Christians 'genocide'

AFP , Monday 2 Mar 2015
Views: 1129
Views: 1129

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Monday crimes committed against Christians in the Middle East were tantamount to "genocide", joining other high-ranking diplomats in calling for action.

Like other minorities, Christians have been the target of brutal violence waged by jihadists in countries such as Libya or Syria.

"There are awful crimes, Christians are killed, they are burnt alive, 21 Egyptian Copts have been beheaded in Libya, all these are signs of genocide following the definition of the UN," Lavrov said on the sidelines of the main annual session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva.

He added that Christians were also persecuted in Ukraine, where "three priests have been killed, many fled to Russia."

Gebran Bassil, the Lebanese foreign minister, also painted a dark picture of the situation of Christians in the Middle East.

"Twenty years ago, in Iraq, there were one million Christians, in 2014, there were 400,000 and today, 200,000," he said.

"Cases of violence have strongly increased, as have reported cases of collective rapes as punishment.

"There are a lot of trafficking cases of children and women," he added, asking whether Christians would one day feel obliged to leave the Middle East altogether.

"It is time to take action," he said.

Short link:


Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

© 2010 Ahram Online.