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EDITIONS
 Tuesday, 14 January, 2003, 15:09 GMT
Profile: Assyrian parties
Assyrian Democratic Movement logo
Chaldeans, Syriacs and Assyrians are Iraqi Christians
With five seats reserved for the northern Iraqi Christians in the Kurdish National Assembly, the Assyrian Democratic Movement (ADM) is the most important party representing this group.

Since its establishment in April 1979 it has campaigned for the recognition of Assyrian national rights under the slogan: "A free democratic Iraq and recognition of the Assyrian national existence."

With the possibility of war looming and preparations being made for a post-Saddam Iraq, the ADM, under the leadership of Younadin Yusuf, has declared itself in favour of a federal Iraq, provided that what it sees as its national rights are fully recognised.

The ADM encompasses Chaldean, Assyrian and Syriac ethnic identities - which the party says are different names for the same nation - and represents several different Christian denominations, including Chaldean Catholics, Syriac Catholics, Orthodox, Eastern Assyrians and Protestants.

The party objected to what it deemed a divisive strategy put forward by the KDP and PUK in a proposal for a constitution in November 2002, which referred to Assyrians and Chaldeans separately. It requested "that the word 'and' be removed from between Assyrian and Chaldean, as an expression of unity of our people". The request was rejected.

The group has a radio station, which broadcasts for two hours a day in Assyrian and a web site in Assyrian, Arabic and English. It also runs the International Assyrian News Agency and publishes a monthly newspaper called Bahra.

Other Assyrian organisations include the Assyrian National Congress , the Assyrian Patriotic Party and the Bayt-al-Nahrayn Democratic Party.

BBC Monitoring, based in Caversham in southern England, selects and translates information from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages.


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13 Jan 03 | Media reports
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