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Churches in United Sates issue a call for peace and security in Middle East and South Sudan

By World Council of Churches (WCC)
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GENEVA, Switzerland, May 28, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- An urgent call for protection of human rights, peace and security in the Middle East and South Sudan was recently issued by the National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA (NCCUSA) at its first Christian Unity Gathering from 18 to 20 May in Washington, D.C.

While the NCCUSA, which represents member churches of the World Council of Churches (WCC), expressed solidarity with all communities affected by violence, it said, “We are particularly saddened when this violence impacts our sisters and brothers in Christian communities around the world.”

Conveying concern over conflicts in the Middle East region, the NCCUSA said, “While the qualitative presence of the Christian communities is robust, as they fulfil their ministry, offer social programs, foster interfaith relations, and support peace-making efforts, they are nonetheless impacted by such conflict.”

“We therefore remain steadfast in our solidarity,” the NCCUSA affirmed.

Making a special reference to Israel and Palestine, the NCCUSA called upon “relevant parties both inside and outside Israel and Palestine to seriously engage, despite ever-present setbacks, in the search for a peace agreement between the Israelis and Palestinians.”

Speaking about Syria and Egypt, the NCCUSA urged the relevant parties to end conflicts and encouraged the churches to continue to “pray, advocate and work for peace.”

In another statement, the NCCUSA said that South Sudan is among places where crimes against humanity, mass atrocities and warning signs of genocide are occurring.

“In moments of crisis such as the one now facing South Sudan, the collective voice of the communions that comprise the NCC have been clear and strong in calling for policies and actions to prevent violence, to cease hostilities when they occur, and to foster reconciliation as a means of transforming conflict and injustice into justice and peace,” read the statement.

In its efforts to advocate for peace, the NCCUSA, along with its members, affirmed solidarity with its partner organizations, including the WCC, the Church World Service, the South Sudan Council of Churches, the Baptist World Alliance and United to End Genocide.