Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Churches remember Korean hostages in Afghanistan after latest death

By Ekklesia staff writers31 Jul 2007

The killing of a second Korean Christian hostage in Afghanistan has led the Presbyterian Churchin the Republic of Korea (PROK) to make an urgent call for prayer amongthe “entire ecumenical community around the world [...] that the killings of innocent people may stop and that these hostages may safely return to their families.”

“We urge the global community to work for true peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan,” wrote Presbyterian general secretary the Rev Yoon Kil Soo in a letter yesterday. It continued: “We sincerely request the governments of both Afghanistan and the US to lead the negotiations with the Taliban for the sake of the safe return of the hostages.”

“The entire ecumenical community weeps at the senseless loss of life taking place in Afghanistan,” said Rev Dr Samuel Kobia, general secretary of the World Council of Churches, in response to the letter.

Dr Kobia said: “We invite our member churches to pray with our brothers and sister in Korea for a peaceful end to this crisis and that the hostages will be freed.”

The WCC chief also emphasized the need for a speedy and peaceful end to the violence in Afghanistan and for a nonviolent resolution to the long standing conflict there.

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