Final Declaration of the Brussels Extensive Meeting

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In commitment to the agreement reached among our national institutions during the visit of the Assyrian Democratic Organization (ADO) to Iraq in October 2008, and under the slogan: "Together, we shall build bridges not walls", all of our (Chaldean Syriac Assyrian) people political parties and institutions that are active both at home and in Europe, were invited to an extensive meeting in Brussels on 28 February, 2009. The meeting was held with a wide participation of the representatives of those institutions.

The participants agreed on the importance of unifying the national and ethnic stand of our people’s institutions through the adoption of an attitude that reflected the reality of the unity of our people’s identity as well as its national loyalty as an indigenous people whose existence and full national rights should be recognized and secured by the constitutions of Iraq, Syria, Turkey, Iran and Lebanon. The names that our people carry represent a continuous and deeply rooted inheritance of which we are both proud and boastful.

The participants also agreed on the joint work among our institutions both at home and in the Diaspora within the framework of democratic work and the adoption of an objective and responsible dialogue. The historical loyalty to our homeland also calls upon us to be committed to the national and ethnic partnership with our fellow citizens and the establishment and support of the culture of tolerance, human rights, and indigenous people.

  • Based on this common understanding, and in light of a positive atmosphere that prevailed over the meeting’s sessions and following, extensive discussions regarding all the national and political issues of concern to our people, the participants agreed to:
  • Hail the political and security progress in Iraq reflected in the successful Provincial Councils’ elections, whose results are both appreciated, welcomed and respected by the participants,
  • Demand the adoption of the designation of “Chaldean Syriac Assyrian” for our people. In this context, the participants welcome the Kurdistan Region (KR) Parliament’s adoption of the national quota for our people as a national identity, and call upon the Iraqi Parliament to follow suit.
  • Support our people’s demand for autonomy that is provided for by the constitutions of Iraq and KR, because autonomy is a nationalistic right for our people that enhances the Iraqi national unity through the practice of our people of its self rule and secure its existence and future and play its role in the reconstruction of a new federal, democratic, pluralistic and united Iraq.
  • Reject any projects, under any name or title, that aim at driving out our people from their homelands. And the participants, in this respect, urge the Iraqi government and the international community to provide the necessary conditions for the safe return of the Iraqi refugees from the neighboring countries, including our people.
  • Call upon the Syrian political leadership to carry out democratic changes and introduce the legislations that acknowledge the ethnic identity of the various Syrian people including our people, adopt, plans and sponsor programs which help the members of those people express themselves within the boundaries of national unity.
  • Appeal to the Turkish government to find a fair solution to the encroachments made against Mor Gabriel Monastery which is a symbol for our indigenous people remaining in Turkey. The participants also request the Turkish government to bear its legal and moral responsibilities to protect monastery.

In order to achieve these goals, the participants decided on the creation of a coordination office in Brussels, Belgium. The coordination office represents our political parties and organizations in the homeland and our national institutions in Europe which support and seek to achieve autonomy for our people, and endeavor to gain the support of the European Union and its institutions for the refugees and IDPs of our people who are scattered about all over the Middle East and for their return and to carry out projects to provide economic and humanitarian needs for our people so as to help them adhere to their existence in their homeland and build their future. The above coordination office belongs to all our people and their institutions, and seeks to serve our people’s interests away from internal disputes. A follow up committee was also set up whose main task is to gather the legal information needed for the establishment of the coordination office and pave the way for the establishment of the office and hold a foundational meeting to which will be invited all our people’s political parties and institutions that believe in the objectives and recommendations of this meeting.

Finally, the participants would like to express heartfelt gratitude and high appreciation to the efforts of those who contributed to the preparation and holding of the above extensive meeting stressing that this is only a step on the way to achieve common work and pave the way for a suitable background to achieve the highest level of coordination amongst all the powers and institutions of our people at home and in the Diaspora and also to find a framework to unify its common efforts in the interest of man, people and homeland.

Brussels on 28 February, 2009
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