Thousands of Assyrian Christians at risk in Syria

Thousands of Assyrian Christians at risk in Syria

Over 15,000 Assyrian Christian families remaining in Syria are at risk, the bishop of the Assyrian Church of the East in Lebanon, Yatron Koliana, said.

"My personal sources say there are about 15,000 families left in Syria. Of course, they do not live in the villages captured by militants, but were able to temporarily relocate to the nearby towns of Hasakah, Qamishi and Tall Tamr," RIA Novosti cited Bishop Koliana as saying.

According to him, the Assyrian diaspora (3500 families) was able to accommodate an estimated 1500 internally displaced families, and over 550 Christian refugees have received shelter in Lebanon since March.

"We very much hope that countries such as Russia and the United States will hear our call for help from their Christian brothers in the Middle East," the Bishop emphasized.

The Bishop underscored the Assyrians’ desire to return to their homeland, but said their security largely depends on "strong countries that in one way or another affect the Syrian crisis."