Hassake (Agenzia Fides) - The Syrian Orthodox Church of St. Mary and the Christian school of Al-Wahda were destroyed in Deir Ezzor, a town of Mesopotamia, at the center of fighting that has caused an exodus of the civilian population. This was reported to Fides Agency by the Syrian Orthodox Archbishop, Eustathius Matta Roham, Metropolitan of "Jazirah and Euphrates," explaining that "it is a very sad day for me and for the whole community." The two buildings were hit and destroyed in the crossfire between the army and rebel groups. Mesopotamia, note local sources of Fides, is experiencing a "slow death", and the entire civilian population (Arabs, Christians, Kurds, and other groups) are paying a very high price. Archbishop Matta Roham tells Fides: "This fierce war is above all a war against our civilization. It is a conflict where everyone loses, in the destruction of our beloved country. If the rebels or the regime think they can win, in the end, I think we will only have a country in ruins, with thousands of orphans, widows, poor people and especially destabilized by enmity in society."
The Archbishop addresses those who are fighting, "Who will rebuild all that we have built over decades of hard work? And how long will it take? Who will build deteriorated social relations? We ask for the prayers of all Christians in the world, in order to regain peace in Syria. "(PA) (Agenzia Fides 31/01/2013)