Assyrians Targeted in Khabur
In pre-dawn attacks on Monday residents of the 35 contiguous Assyrian villages along the Khabur river in north-eastern Syria awoke to burning churches, deserted homes and martyred soldiers as extremists swept through the majority Assyrian Christian area on a destructive rampage.
To date, more than 200 Assyrians have been kidnapped with recent reports placing the number even higher. These include a large number of women, children and the elderly.
In the days and hours following the assaults, in excess of 3000 people fled their homes in panic, fear and despair and are now displaced and spread across the major neighbouring regions of Hassaka and Qamishli. Many hundreds of these people took refuge in St Mary’s Cathedral of the Assyrian Church of the East in Hassaka.
ACERO at the Forefront
His Grace Mar Afram Athneil, Bishop of Syria and Chairman of ACERO is at the forefront of the crisis responding directly to the widespread need in the area. Immediately upon receipt of reports on the ground ACERO Trustees made contact with His Grace and are coordinating on how to best respond to the needs of the affected.
ACERO has launched its Syria Appeal and has immediately mobilized its capabilities and resources to significantly increase the volume of aid and relief reaching the area.
ACERO Trustees remain in constant contact with our Chairman and staff, intensely monitoring developments on the ground and the status of those kidnapped.
At present, we have confirmed that there are 1050 Assyrian Christian families who have fled to the relative safety of Hassaka. These people are largely reliant on aid from humanitarian organisations.
You Can Help!
There is an immediate need for food, medication, bedding and sanitary items.
Your generosity and support of the Syria Appeal will enable ACERO to continue to respond immediately and appropriately.
The masses impacted by this latest crisis gripping the Assyrian population of Khabur and throughout the Middle East deserve to live with dignity in their ancestral homeland. We are determined to maintain their dignity.
Please continue to pray for those taken hostage that they may return to their families unharmed.
Be assured that every dollar will make a difference in this time of intense need.