ON-Lion Letter

In May, a Hudson Institute conference in New York City focused on the policies and strategies urgently needed to help the Middle East's vulnerable religious minorities.

Leading the day-long conference, "The Islamic State's Religious Cleansing and the Urgency of a Strategic Response," were Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, and Hudson Institute distinguished scholar Walter Russell Mead.  They were joined by experts from multiple pontifical humanitarian agencies, writers, and noted experts.

Nearly a year after the Islamic State swept through northern Iraq and enforced its convert-or-die ultimatum, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians and members of other ancient religions remain in encampments in Kurdistan and neighboring countries.  They subsist on international humanitarian aid and their children lack access to education.  Many are losing hope of ever returning to their homes and, with few options to resettle within the region, many are seeking to leave.

Is there any hope, conference participants asked, that these Christians and other religious minorities can remain in the Middle East?

During his remarks, Dolan laid out a seven-point plan to end the persecution of Christians by the Islamic State.

Audio and video coverage of the conference is available online.

The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee substantially supports the Hudson Institute, including its Center for Religious Freedom.

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