Beirut (Agenzia Fides) - The two Primates of the Syro-Antiochene Churches - Syriac Orthodox Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II and Syriac Catholic Patriarch Ignatius Youssif III - have signed and sent a letter to the highest representatives of the Iraqi institutions (Head of State, Prime Minister and Speaker of the Iraqi Parliament) to recognize and include the "syriac" as an ethnicity to be included in the Iraqi constitution. This measure was requested by the two Patriarchs as a necessary act to ensure "the right of our people". The joint signatures of the letters took place during the visit made by Syriac Catholic Patriarch Ignatius Youssif III at the patriarchal residence in the Monastery of Mor Yacoub Baradeus in Atchaneh, Bikfaya, where the recent Synod of the Syriac Orthodox Church concluded.
Beirut: Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II of Antioch and All East – Primate of the Universal Syria Orthodox church visited Iraq for the third time. The Patriarch met with several Christian leaders, in particular wirh Mor Ignatius Youssef III Younan of the Syriac Catholic Rite (Eastern UNIATE Rite in communion with the Roman Catholic Church) and faithful and also visited many refugee camps.
Beirut: The Syrian Orthodox Church has appointed Mar Aprem Karim Coorilos as the head of the Church. He be the 123rd Patriarch.
The selection was made at a meeting chaired by Catholicos Baselios Thomas I. The new Patriarch is the head of the North American Syrian Church. He is to take charge only after Easter and will be known as Mar Ignatius Aprem II.