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Archbishop of Aleppo: Young adults don't see hope in the horizon. They are fleeing Syria

2015-09-18

The civil war in Syria is forcing Christians to leave their country. The Archbishop of Aleppo, Msgr. Antoine Audo, says the violence, instability and hopelessness is driving people out every day. 

MSGR.ANTOINE AUDO
Archbishop of Aleppo, Syria
"We are Syria's Christians. Despite the difficulties, we are determined to give testimony of what we are going through.”

He has personally seen Christians fleeing from the city. From a group of about 150,000, now there are only about 50,000 in the city.  It reflects what has happened throughout the nation. Before the war struck, there were 2.5 million Christians in Syria. Now there's about less than half. Many of them are young adults who have degrees, but at this point, no professional future in the country.  

MSGR.ANTOINE AUDO
Archbishop of Aleppo, Syria
"They do everything they can, to save enough money to go to Turkey. Once there, they pay to take a boat to Europe. We've seen tragic stories of death along the way. They do whatever they can to flee, because they see no other hope along the horizon.” 

One of the biggest challenges in this civil war is politics and power struggles at higher levels. 

MSGR.ANTOINE AUDO
Archbishop of Aleppo, Syria
"Perhaps Aleppo is the city where the drama is seen more closely, since it's only about 25 miles away from Turkey. There, a lot of armed groups train and give weapons to the youth. They give them all the resources they need to attack Aleppo.” 

Locals are asking for a political solution that will prevent cities like Aleppo from falling deeper into turmoil, like the Iraqi city of Mosul, where terrorism and fundamentalism have forced practically all Christians to flee. 

Organizations like Aid to the Church in Need are helping these persecuted Christians. Helping them stay alive despite the bombs and the terror. Since the war began, it has donated about 8 million euros to help construct churches and to help Christian families. 

In addition to material support, they are also helping with the humanitarian crisis. They are asking Western countries to facilitate the process, so that Christians can get all their paper work in order, so they can be officially recognized as refugees. 


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