Bishop Demetrios of Mokissos, Chancellor of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, was proud to see today's announcement by Secretary of State John Kerry concerning the official recognition by the Obama Administration of genocide against the Christian minority population of Syria and Iraq. This rare official recognition comes after an intense lobbying effort by the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago among others.
The Obama Administration now officially recognizes the internationally defined crimes of genocide, ethnic cleansing, and crimes against humanity in Syria and Iraq. This has been an objective of Bishop Demetrios since late last year when this issue was identified at a biennial gathering of all of the parishes within the Metropolis of Chicago.
Since then, with the blessings of Metropolitan Iakovos of Chicago, Bishop Demetrios has reached out to each Congressional Representative within the jurisdiction of the Metropolis of Chicago, as well as the White House itself, lobbying them to take action. He has had numerous editorials on the issue published in some of the leading newspapers in the United States with recognition by congressional and civic leaders.
On hearing Secretary Kerry’s announcement, Bishop Demetrios stated: “While I am proud of the work our Metropolis has done to this point and honored by the responsiveness of the President and Congress, I also recognize our work is only half completed. It is my hope with this recognition by the United States, added to that of the European Union and the Pope of Rome, the U. N. Security Council will take the necessary action to enact its own resolution titled ‘Responsibility to Protect.’ I see this as our best hope to ending this genocide.”
The Metropolis of Chicago oversees all Greek Orthodox Parishes within Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, as well as large portions of Missouri and Indiana. You can find the recent editorials by Bishop Demetrios as well as the Resolution passed by the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago Clergy Laity Assembly (November, 2015) on the Chicago Greek Orthodox Archdiocese’ website: www.chicago.goarch.org.
Contact: John C. Ackerman
Director of Media Relations