Father Dall'Oglio under threat of expulsion from Syria

Father Paolo Dall’Oglio, creator of a monastic community in the Syrian monastery of St. Moses the Abyssinian (Deir Mar Musa al-Habachi), winner of the Euro-Mediterranean Award for the Dialogue Between Cultures was ordered by the authorities to leave Syria. According to the regime he supports the revolution going on in Syria and therefore acts to the detriment of the state.
Father Paulo is a renown promoter of ecumenism and interfaith dialogue. It is clearly visible in the work undertaken by his monastery based on Evangelic simplicity, Abraham’s hospitality and the priority principle of working for the harmony and co-existence of Islam and Christianity. Recently, he frequently commented on the situation in the region in the media, particularly European ones. He told Asianews.it that the Syrians want, and deserve human rights, starting with the free press and human dignity. At the same time, he calls for peace, negotiations and reconciliation.
The decision of his expulsion is a very disconcerting one in the context of today’s situation in Syria and its future, in particular the problems of religious minorities and interfaith dialogue in the region.

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Father Paolo took part in the ICC’s debate “Art for dialogue“ in May 2008, within the 1001 Actions for Dialogue campaign organised by the Anna Lindh Euro-Mediterranean Foundation for the Dialogue Between Cultures. His article “Desert Ecumene” was published in “Culture in dialogue” (ed. J. Sanetra-Szeliga, R. Kusek).
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