ASIA/SYRIA - In the Syrian city of Sadad, the Christians who had to flee to Europe are beginning to return

Wednesday, 6 April 2016 refugees

Sadad (Agenzia Fides) - In the Syrian city of Sadad, Christian families who had to flee to Europe to escape the violence of the conflict are beginning to return. This was reported to the Russian media by Suleiman al Khalil, mayor of the city located in the province of Homs. "Christians who had left Syria for Europe are beginning to return to Sadad and also to other cities" refers Khalil, adding that the returns are favored by the confidence in the success of military operations supported by Russia and by the cease fire agreed in Monaco of Bavaria on February 12.
Before the conflict Sadad was a city of about 12 thousand inhabitants, mostly Assyrian Christians and Syrian Orthodox. In the years of war, at least a thousand of them fled from Syria, including Archbishop Selwanos Boutros Alnemeh, Syrian Orthodox Metropolitan of Homs and Hama.
According to local Church sources, in October 2013 during the temporary conquest of the city by the jihadists of al Nusra Front, massacres were carried out against the civilian population, confirmed by the discovery of a mass grave with at least 30 dead bodies (see Fides 31/10/2013 ). Last November, even the jihadists of the Islamic State Daesh) had tried to reconquer the city, attacking the positions of Syrian army checkpoints. Over the past three months - says mayor Suleiman al Khalil - at least a hundred Christians from Sadad who fled Syria have returned to their homes, and the return of other two hundred are expected. The city is located 14 kilometers from the road connecting Damascus to Homs, where there are about 15 churches. (GV) (Agenzia Fides 06/04/2016)

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