ASIA/SYRIA - The village of Deir Atieh invaded by Islamists: Christians identified and detained
Damascus (Agenzia Fides) - Militants of Islamist factions have invaded the town of Deir Atieh, north of Damascus, spreading terror, death and destruction. As Fides sources in the Greek Orthodox Church report, the attack took place on 22 November. The militants entered the municipal hospital and took hostage the sick. The museum of Deir Atieh that welcomed thousands of works and precious archaeological finds was devastated. Mosques and churches were hit and damaged. Numerous homes were looted and civilians captured and used as human shields.
The situation is particularly worrying for Christians. The population, about 25 thousand people, have begun to flee. The militiamen examine the identification documents of those who intend to leave the city and retain those who have Christian names. To be able to leave the village, a Greek Orthodox priest had to say he was married and present himself with a woman: he was allowed to go just because he had an Arab name and had no ancestry or Christian reference.
Fr. F.H., who in a note sent to Fides requested anonymity for security reasons, pleads the international community and the Holy See to mobilize in order to arrange for the release of the hostages and save the village of Deir Atieh. It is not clear, notes the source of Fides, what prompted the armed gangs to penetrate the village. Even hundreds of people from Qara, another Syrian village in the mountains of Qalamoun, 90 km from Damascus had found refuge. In recent weeks, Qara had been attacked by Islamist fighters from the city of Arzal. Among the refugees of Qara, who moved to Deir Atieh, there is also the Greek-Catholic priest Father George Luis and all his parishioners. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 25/11/2013)
- 2015-05-22 - ASIA/SYRIA – Fr. Jacques Murad kidnapped; he belonged to the same community of Father Paolo Dall'Oglio
- 2015-05-13 - Raid of the coalition in the Khabur valley; Assyrian hostages are likely to become "human shields"
- 2015-05-08 - Chaldean Bishop of Aleppo: in dirty wars in the Middle East there are those who exploit the suffering of Christians
- 2015-04-30 - Archbishop Hindo: "jihadi attack warded off in Hassaké. Deadlock in negotiations for the release of Assyrian hostages"
- 2015-04-17 - Christian Cemeteries vandalized in Mosul and in Galilee
- 2015-04-17 - The Syrian government dedicates a garden to the Martyrs of the Assyrian Genocide in the center of Damascus
- 2015-04-15 - The Heads of the Christian communities in Aleppo: is it the time of the Resurrection of the Savior or the funeral of his disciples?
- 2015-04-14 - Bombings on Christian neighborhoods in Aleppo, also two young Salesian animators killed
- 2015-04-09 - Caritas operator dies in the bombing in Aleppo
- 2015-04-01 - Idlib in the hands of jihadists. Orthodox priest kidnapped