Syrian Christians Caught Between ISIS and Turkey

11/13/2019 Syria (International Christian Concern) – Yesterday, the Armenian Christian community of Qamishli gathered to hold the funeral of two priests killed by ISIS on Monday. A deacon who was injured in the attack noted that the incident happened at a checkpoint when assailants on motorcycles approached their vehicle and shot at point blank range.

Meanwhile, updated local media reports from three bombings in Qamishli which occurred the same day as the assassination and were also claim by ISIS show concern that the militants were also coordinating attacks against Christians in the city. In addition to a Chaldean church which was damaged, the two other bombs reportedly occurred near an Assyrian Christian owned market and a Catholic school.

This resurgence of ISIS comes in the wake of the chaos generated by the Turkish invasion into Syria, prompted by the abrupt withdrawal of the US military. A permanent US post is reportedly being established near Qamishli and the Turkish border, which may serve as a buffer. Turkish President Erdogan is today visiting Washington DC where Turkey’s war crimes inside Syria may be discussed.

Meanwhile, Turkish Sponsored Organizations (TSOs) are continuing attacks in the Khabour area despite ceasefire and safe zone boundary agreements, which is impacting several Christian villages. The Syriac Military Council, a Christian militia operating in this area, reported yesterday that one of their fighters was killed and three captured by TSOs.

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