Report: Over 120 churches damaged by war in Syria since 2011

Light of truth

A Syrian war monitor associated with the opposition said on September 9 that over 120 Christian places of worship have been damaged or destroyed by all sides in the country’s eight-year conflict.

Some of the attacks were deliberate, such as the Islamic State group using bulldozers to destroy the ancient Saint Elian Monastery in Homs province in 2015. The majority, however, were caused by front-line combat, shelling or rockets.

Christians made up about 10% of Syria’s pre-war population of 23 million, who co-existed with the Muslim majority and enjoyed freedom of worship under President Bashar Assad’s government.

The report by the Qatar-based Syrian Network for Human Rights, which collects statistics on the war, said government forces were responsible for 60% of the 124 documented attacks since fighting erupted in March 2011. The rest were blamed on IS militants, the al-Qaida-linked group Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and other factions of the armed opposition.

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