Chaldean Archbishop Louis Sako of Kirkuk, Iraq, is pictured in a 2010 file photo. Gunmen shooting at guards keeping watch over his residence in Kirkuk in northern Iraq triggered a firefight, leaving two of the gunmen dead and five policemen wounded. CNS photo/Paul Haring

Iraqi archbishop 'not afraid' after residence shot at by gunmen

By  Carol Glatz, Catholic News Service
  • January 12, 2012

VATICAN CITY - Gunmen shooting at guards keeping watch over the archbishop's residence in Kirkuk in northern Iraq triggered a firefight, leaving two of the gunmen dead and five policemen wounded.

Chaldean Catholic Archbishop Louis Sako told Vatican Radio that he had just returned home from a parish visit before the drive-by attack Jan. 11.

After the shooting, the archbishop said he immediately went to the scene to bolster the spirits of guards and bystanders.

"We are not afraid," he said. "It's also true that the situation is a bit tense, and there's no order or control in the country. We, however, were not afraid, at least not immediately."

Archbishop Sako said he believes the gunmen had the wrong target. Police suspect the attackers were targeting a member of the Iraqi parliament who lives next to the archbishop's house and whose home also was attacked Jan. 8, according to the Rome-based AsiaNews.

Archbishop Sako said the gunmen were from Baghdad "and, therefore, were not sure where to go. They found themselves facing our security guards and fired, without knowing who they were shooting at."

Three men in a white car shot at the residence guards. The guards at the archbishop's residence and the parliamentarian's house returned fire. Police nearby intervened as well, the archbishop said.

Two of the three gunmen were killed, and one was arrested.

Comments (0)

There are no comments posted here yet

Leave your comments

  1. Posting comment as a guest. Sign up or login to your account.
Attachments (0 / 3)
Share Your Location
Type the text presented in the image below

Support The Catholic Register

Unlike many other news websites, The Catholic Register has never charged readers for access to the news and information on our site. We want to keep our award-winning journalism as widely available as possible. But we need your help.

For more than 125 years, The Register has been a trusted source of faith based journalism. By making even a small donation you help ensure our future as an important voice in the Catholic Church. If you support the mission of Catholic journalism, please donate today. Thank you.