His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II signed the below published statement of Peacemaking Initiative of Christian Leaders in response to the situation in the Middle East.
The statement was also signed by His Holiness Tawadros II, Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of Saint Mark Episcopate for the Coptic Orthodox Church, as well as His Beatitude John X, Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, His Beatitude Theodoros II, Greek Orthodox Pope and Patriarch of Alexandria and All Africa, and His Holiness Kirill I, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called children of God (Mt 5:9)
Impelled by a sense of responsibility for the millions of Christians that God has entrusted to our spiritual care and for the wellbeing of the entire human family, which shares a common destiny, we join together to speak out at this time of heightened international tension.
The ongoing hostilities in the Middle East, which in recent years have brought immense suffering, claimed the lives of many thousands of people and caused the flight of millions of refugees, now threaten to turn into a global conflict.
Our world has reached a point where there is a real danger of a breakdown in international relations and cooperation for the common good of the human family.
Clearly, the horrors of the world wars of the last century can hardly be compared with the dire consequences of a world war at the present time.
In the face of this terrible threat, we appeal to all world leaders to recognize their responsibility before their respective nations, before mankind and before God.
We likewise appeal to the countries of the United Nations, and particularly members of the Security Council, to recall their duties towards the family of nations, and we implore them, in the name of God, to overcome their disagreements and to work together for peace in the world.
Together we call upon the political leaders to avoid a further escalation of tensions, to eschew confrontation and to embrace dialogue.