The 25th CONGRESS Jonkoping, Sweden SEPTEMBER 4-7, 2008
The 25th Worldwide Congress of the Assyrian Universal Alliance (AUA) took place in Jonkoping , Sweden from September 4 through September 7, 2008 with the participation of Assyrian representatives from around the world. After extensive, elaborate and open discussions on the condition of Assyrians both in the ancestral homeland and in the Diaspora or exile, the following resolutions were unanimously approved.
WHEREAS, AUA, an umbrella organization for Assyrians worldwide
a) Is deeply and acutely concerned about the condition of Assyrians in the homeland, where Assyrians are not recognized as the indigenous people of the Federal Republic of Iraq, but rather a religious minority;
b) Reaffirms that Assyrians are entitled to an Autonomous Region in their ancestral homeland, as an integral part of the Federal Republic of Iraq;
c) Confirms its intolerance of the continued denial of Assyrian rights in Iraq and deplores all acts of persecution, terrorism, beheadings, kidnappings and killings committed against Assyrians, and particularly Assyrian religious figures, causing massive and disproportionate internal displacements and forced migration of Assyrians from Iraq; and
- The genocide and persecution of Assyrians before and after WWI;
- The denial of Assyrian political and national rights during the Lausanne conference and by the League of Nations, post WWI;
- The persecutions and transgressions committed against Assyrians, particularly the massacre of Simele in 1933;
- the subsequent oppression and persecution of Assyrians by the former Iraqi regimes; and
- AUA’s unwavering condemnation of all acts of terrorism worldwide.
- Assyrians’ inherent identity as the most indigenous people of Iraq.
- The unity, sovereignty, and territorial integrity of Iraq.
NOW THEREFORE, the AUA declares the following:
- The government of Iraq must grant the Assyrian unequivocal right to an Autonomous Region, encompassing the Assyrian ancestral lands, located between the Greater Zab and Tigris rivers with international borders to the north and west, as part of the Federal Republic of Iraq and under direct protection of the United Nations.
- The urgent need for the federal government of Iraq to formally recognize Assyrians as the indigenous people of Iraq with the right to an Autonomous Region, and the right for full and equal participation in all national affairs of the Federal Republic of Iraq.
- Its appeal to the federal government of Iraq to provide for Assyrian human, social, political, religious and economic rights throughout Iraq by explicit constitutional amendments that provide full legal basis to protect and preserve Assyrian rights in the Federal Republic of Iraq.
- Its appeal to the federal government of Iraq to provide for all necessary accommodations in order for the displaced and refugee Assyrians to be able to safely return to their homes in Iraq and serve Iraq’s social and economic interests.
- Its appeal to the federal government of Iraq to provide the security and security assurances necessary for all Assyrians’ safe return to their ancestral homeland, to benefit fully from their national rights as citizens of Iraq, prevent any and all forms of discrimination, oppression and transgressions against Assyrians, including deprivation of the privilege of self determination that is available to other sects and ethnicities of Iraq.
- Its appeal to the federal government of Iraq to take affirmative measures to ensure immediate restoration of all Assyrian communities, villages and churches.
- Its appeal to the federal government of Iraq to ensure an equitable allocation and distribution of Iraq’s revenues, resources and fiscal expenditure for infrastructure to Assyrians and the Assyrian Autonomous Region.
- Its appeal to the federal government of Iraq to ensure the provision of all necessary and sufficient reconstruction aid equitably, whereby the Assyrians’ share is distributed directly to Assyrians.
- The necessity that in the forthcoming census of Iraq there be an accurate account of all Assyrians, whether those in Iraq or the Diaspora.
- The necessity for the federal government of Iraq to take all necessary measures to safeguard the rights of Assyrians in future elections in Iraq, not as part of the religious minorities but a deeply rooted ethnicity of Iraq.
- The necessity for the federal government of Iraq to take all necessary measures to safeguard all future censuses by providing for the supervision of the process by international and human rights organizations.
- Its appeal to the federal government of Iraq to take all necessary measures to save and protect Assyrian archaeological, sacred and historical sites.