A recent report reveals that almost 80% of Christians have left Iraq and Syria after the Civil war in Syria back in 2011. The report says that the rampage of terror group ISIS was only the “tipping point” in the mass exodus of Christians from both the countries. The report titled “Understanding the recent movements of Christians leaving Syria and Iraq” states that the exodus was to such an extent that chalking out exact figures is difficult.
The report further claims that the Christian community in Iraq has been minimized from more than 300,000 in 2014 to 200,000-250,000. Majority of the Christians have been internally displaced as a result of the ISIS advancement.
The report says that in Syria; Christian population of around two million some six years ago has been “roughly halved” now. This report has been brought together as a joint venture of three different charity groups namely Open Doors, Served and Middle East Concern. The report says that the Christians in Iraq and Syria are undergoing an “overall loss of hope for a safe and secure future”.
The report quotes several interviewees as saying that “the Middle East is no longer a home for Christians.” The magnitude of damage Christians have suffered at the hands of the terror group ISIS, civil war and other rebel groups has been documented in the report. It has been detailed problems of Christians such as near destruction of historic Christian towns, loss of property, lack of education, lack of jobs, heavy financial losses and many others.
As a result of the exodus, thousands of Christians have fled to neighboring Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey. The report says that a small number of Christians have even entered the European countries such as Sweden and Germany, the report says that some of these Christian refugees are facing an “incredibly difficult” experience in Europe.
Open Doors, Served and Middle East Concern have urged the European Union to take steps in order to punish those responsible for religious or ethnic persecution and discrimination in Iraq and Syria. The report says that many Christians who are left behind want to rebuild the shattered societies of Iraq and Syria.