Battle to liberate Qaraqosh from the clutches of the terror group Islamic State has begun. Qaraqosh is Iraq’s largest Christian town – which was once home to largest Christian population. The battle for liberation of the town began on October 18, Tuesday when forces entered Qaraqosh.
Peshmerga forces had entered both Qaraqosh and nearby Karamless on Tuesday, stated Fraternité en Irak an organization which was formed to help the victims of religious violence in Iraq. “Qaraqosh and Karamless were taken this morning,” the group tweeted. However, it was explained that some time will be required to establish control of the city.
Meanwhile a representative of Nineveh Operations Command of the Iraqi military told the BBC that the forces had “entered Qaraqosh without meeting any resistance.” Nonetheless, an Iraqi general said that reports claiming that Qaraqosh had been recaptured were not true.
Currently, there are no Christians left in Qaraqosh, as tens and thousands fled at the time when the terror group Islamic State captured the town. A local Christian Father Nageed Michaeel, a Dominican priest, who had fled Qaraqosh in 2014, said that the time when Christians started fleeing Qaraqosh was terrible.
“It was terrible. There were women and children with no food and water,” he said. He further narrated the situation Christians face in Erbil he said that tens and thousands of displaced Christians are left stranded and marooned. “We are in a tunnel and cannot see the light,” he said.
An Iraqi priest had portrayed the dismal situation in Qaraqosh after the town fell in ISIS’s hands. “These two churches are being used as prisons and for torture. Most inside are Christians and they are being forced to convert to Islam. ISIS have been breaking all the crosses and statues of Mary.”