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April 11, 2013 3:08 am

Turkey Erects Refugee Camps for Fleeing Syrian Christians

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A Syrian refugee camp on theTurkish border for displaced people of the Syrian civil war. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Turkey is erecting new refugee camps to accommodate the growing number of Christians fleeing the Syrian civil war.

Turkey has seen an influx of 250,000-400,000 Syrian refugees, the majority of whom are from Syria’s Sunni Muslim majority. But a growing number of Syria’s minority groups, including Christians and Kurds, are fleeing as well.

As a result, two new refugee camps are being erected that will have a capacity to house 2,500 people, mainly Assyrian Christians and refugees from other Christian denominations, Reuters reported. The camps are being built near the Turkish town of Mardin, which has its own small Assyrian Christian community as well.

Separately, in a meeting with French President Francois Hollande in Paris, Maronite Lebanese Cardinal Beshara Rai expressed his concern over Syria’s beleaguered Christian population.

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“I am concerned about the situation of Christians in Syria: 60 percent of the [Christian] population that has left is from the Orthodox sect,” Rai told Hollande, according to the London-based Al-Hayat newspaper.

France, a former colonial power in the region, has traditionally been seen as protector of the region’s Christian minority.

“France remains very attentive to the situation of Christians [of the Levant] who are important to the identity of the country in which they live,” Hollande said in a statement.

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  • jerry hersch

    “I am concerned about the situation of Christians in Syria: 60 percent of the [Christian] population that has left is from the Orthodox sect,” Rai told Hollande, according to the London-based Al-Hayat newspaper.”
    No surprise in the percentage …Historically, until the present turmoil, 55% of Syrian Christians have been associated with the Orthodox Churches and 40% with various Catholic denominations associated with Rom( there are half a dozen Catholic denominations)
    A breakdown of the Orthodox refugees is important..Greek Orthodox,Armenian Apostolic,Syrian Orthodox,Assyrian..it would perhaps give a hint as to who feels most threatened ..and who is incapable of migrating internally..or is the internal route considered not an option?

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