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Archbishop: “Don’t bomb Iran”: CEN 10.12.07 p 8. October 10, 2007

Posted by geoconger in Archbishop of Canterbury, Arms Control/Defense/Peace Issues, British Foreign Policy, Church of England Newspaper, Episcopal Church in Jerusalem & the Middle East, Iran.

ahmadinejad-un.jpgThe Archbishop of Canterbury has denounced suggestions of a preemptive military strike against Iran’s nuclear weapons programme, saying it would upset the region’s security balance and bring misery to its peoples.

Speaking to the BBC after his return from Damascus, Dr. Williams said that “When people talk about further destabilisation of the region – and you read some American political advisers speaking of action against Syria and Iran – I can only say that I regard that as criminal, ignorant and potentially murderous folly.”

“We do hear talk from some quarters of action against Syria and Iran. I can’t understand what planet such persons are living on, when you see the conditions that are already there,” he said.

In a statement released upon his return from Syria, Dr. Williams described as ‘heartbreaking and harrowing’ a meeting he held in Syria with 200 Christian Iraqi refugees. He told the refugees he would share their plight with the West, and upon return to Britain said their situation required urgent attention.

“Security that will enable these people to return to Iraq depends on a settlement for the whole of that country guaranteeing the liberty and dignity of every minority.”

Lambeth Palace has also denied the veracity of accounts printed by the official Syrian news agency, SANA, of Dr. Williams’ trip to Damascus. SANA reported that in talks with the Archbishop, the Grand Mufti of Syria “pointed out the Israeli suppressive practices in the occupied Palestinian territories which violated all religious laws and international norms, reviewing what Iraq is witnessing of ordeals and catastrophes under the occupation.”

Dr. Williams’ office denied this took place, saying his talks with the Grand Mufti “concerned issues internal to Syria and focussed on the secular character of the Syrian constitution.”

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