Barnabas Fund - International Headquarters River Street, Pewsey, Wilthire. Phone: +44 1672 565030 Latitude: 51 deg 23 min 18 sec N Longitude: 1 deg 45 min 48 sec W .
Islamists besiege two Christian villages...

Email:

Islamists besiege two Christian villages in Syria; 13 people killed

To

Email address:
Separate multiple addresses with a comma (,). Maximum of 10

From

Your name:
Your email address:
Security test:
Please enter the numbers that appear here in the box below.
refresh captcha
CAPTCHA Image
Security code:

Details provided here will never be used in any other context

Islamists besiege two Christian villages in Syria; 13 people killed

Country/Region: Middle East and North Africa, Syria

Islamist rebels besieged two Christian villages in Syria, killing around 13 people and forcing thousands of families to evacuate their homes.

Militants from the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front stormed Saddad and Haffar on Monday last week (21 October). Until then, the villages had been relatively safe, and thousands of internally displaced families had sought refuge there.

A Barnabas Fund partner described the scene as 60 armed vehicles entered Saddad: 

As the vehicles and armed personnel made their way through the streets, the shouting of “Allah Akbar” [“Allah is great”] and the touting of the Quran made it clear to both permanent and displaced that their time of relative tranquility was quickly coming to an end. As the armed groups began to set up sniper posts and a campaign of shelling, the day moved from bad to worse.

Islamist militants patrolling Saddad last week
Islamist militants
patrolling Saddad last week

He said children were crying in fear as the militants took over the villages. It is thought that they were being used as a launching point for strikes against a nearby army base and arsenal. The villages are strategically located between the central city of Homs and the capital Damascus.

Around 13 people were killed, with many more wounded, and while many fled, thousands were held as a human shield. 

Our partners helped Christian families to evacuate to neighbouring villages, Homs and Damascus. Barnabas sent funds to provide transport, blankets, food parcels and other essentials.

On Monday (28 October), government forces recaptured the villages, enabling people to return.

Our partner said on Monday:

My brother and 15 young persons were going back to Haffar and they were all crying of joy when they learned they could return. We are arranging for twelve minibuses to bring people from Damascus and Homs today to the two villages. Tomorrow we are arranging for two buses to bring people back from Damascus and will see how to support the return of the others. We are preparing to give [everyone] food parcels upon their return.

Saddad and Haffar are the latest Christian villages to be targeted by Islamist rebels in Syria’s civil war. The attacks follow raids on Saidnaya and the takeover of Maaloula; a version of Aramaic, the language of Jesus, is spoken in both places.

Help us: Share this article

Email:

Islamists besiege two Christian villages in Syria; 13 people killed

To

Email address:
Separate multiple addresses with a comma (,). Maximum of 10

From

Your name:
Your email address:
Security test:
Please enter the numbers that appear here in the box below.
refresh captcha
CAPTCHA Image
Security code:

Details provided here will never be used in any other context

christian, persecution, charity, church, persecuted, sookhdeo, Islam

Other articles

No related articles found

View Timeline

There is a Church in Syria

Follow Barnabas

or

receive news & appeal emails as they are published

From Twitter

From Twitter_icon

    Daily prayer

    Daily prayer_icon
    • “This is a war against Christians and democracy and their constitution. Allah says we should finish them when we get them.” The leader of the Nigerian Islamist militant group Boko Haram was speaking in a video that reasserted their agenda and addressed “the people of the world”, saying, “Either you are with us Mujahedeen or you are with the Christians.” The translation of the video was released as scores of people were killed in suicide bombings in May, including at least 118 in a double attack in Jos, Plateau state on 20 May. Pray that Boko Haram’s murderous campaign to establish an Islamic state in Northern Nigeria will not succeed. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed 22 hours ago

    • Pray for Bible school students in Vietnam who were subjected to a terrifying night-time raid by police and hired thugs. On 9 June, officers swooped from adjacent rooftops into the church compound that houses the school, while vehicle-loads of people were brought to the site to vandalise the building with bricks, stones and sticks. The students were beaten, punched and kicked before being taken away for interrogation; 20 were left in need of medical attention but were prevented from leaving to find it. Thugs continued to attack the compound over the next ten nights. Pray for the students as they recover from this brutal assault and that they will stand firm in their faith in the face of intimidation. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sun, Aug 2014 00:00

    • In an earlier incident in Saisomboon village, three teenage Christian girls were disqualified from taking their final school examinations because of their faith. The village chief said that in following Christianity, Noi (15), Net (15) and Nut (14) had forfeited their right to education. Five families from the village have now converted to Christianity. A spokesman for Human Rights Watch for Lao Religious Freedom expressed the view that the authorities were trying to find every possible way “to stop the spread of Christian religious freedom in the area”. Pray that the girls will be allowed to complete their education and that opposition to the Christians in the village will cease. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sat, Aug 2014 00:00

    • Five Christians have been charged with murder in Laos after a sick woman sought prayer at her local church, converted to Christianity and later died. Mrs Chan, from Saisomboon village in Savannakhet province, had been ill for two years when she approached the church. Her health improved for a short time, and she and her eight grown-up children came to faith in Christ. The sons and daughters wanted a Christian burial ceremony, but the authorities forbade this unless they renounced their faith, which they refused to do. When Christians in the area protested, five were arrested and subsequently charged with Mrs Chan’s murder. Pray that the God of justice will have compassion on His people (Isaiah 30:18) and ensure their acquittal from this false accusation. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Fri, Aug 2014 00:00

    • A Christian from Loynam village in the Savannakhet province of Laos was arrested on the morning of 29 May and tied to a post before being imprisoned. Two weeks earlier, police and village security officers had gone to Mr Sort’s home and threatened him with eviction from the village and confiscation of all his property if he did not give up his faith. He refused, despite repeated attempts to coerce him. The village chief then seized around £300 of Mr Sort’s money. Give thanks that our brother, who has been a Christian for less than two years, has stood firm in his faith, and ask the Lord to renew his courage and strength (1 Corinthians 16:13). Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Thu, Aug 2014 00:00

    © Barnabas Fund 1997 - 2014 All rights reserved.
    Barnabas Fund & Barnabas Aid are registered trade marks