Christians in Syria are in grave danger after some of the last ancient Christian communities are being attacked by Turkish-backed forces. In the town of Dil Dara near the Turkish border, forces are shelling villages where Christians and Syrians live.
According to Faithwire, CBN News was on ground to report on the attacks, which are part of an ongoing civil war that has lasted for more than 10 years. The motive behind the bombing attacks is to make the people leave the area, as Turkey plans to attempt to resettle the area with Arab Syrians who fled as refugees into Turkey. The country has about 2.3 million refugees who they want settled in the area.
"They shell us every day. Look!" a Christian Syrian villager said, as caught on camera by CBN News. Another survivor lamented, "We are sleeping with our kids, with our animals, outside of the village. That's what we are doing."
Turkey's attacks on the northern Syrian region have caused widespread damage. Another village some 30 kilometers away from the Turkish border regularly gets bombed and shelled by Turkish forces, in the hopes that people would permanently leave the place. The plan of the Turks appears to be working, as many have been forced to leave as refugees.
Syrian Defense Forces Commander Aram walked reporters through the battleground, explaining that it was the "last position north of Tal Tamr." They used to come to the village by way of Seri Kaniye Road but the road remains unusable today, so they were forced to use the M4 road. He added, "There was other civilians here, maybe 14-15 families, but since last week they left. They come mornings and they left evenings. It's a problem."
Across Northern Syria, Christian villages are left abandoned by who once resided there. Walking through the former communities gives off an eerie feeling, especially when such villages were once home to up to 2,000 people. Reports say that the community was building a church when they were forced to abandon their territory. To date, Turkey continues to bomb the northern area of Syria in the hopes that the people who still reside there permanently move away.
In October, Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, prefect of the Congregation for Eastern Churches, sent a message to the Christian faithful in Syria, saying, "If we are here to celebrate the Eucharist of the Lord, it is because despite everything, each of you has preserved the precious treasure of faith," the Catholic Sun reported.
"Amid the bombs, the ruins and the chemical poisons, while the powerful of the world sit around a table making calculations and the people continue to suffer and are reduced to hunger, with the merchants of death enriching themselves selling weapons, you, the people of God in Syria, have kept the faith," Cardinal Sandri shared.
Meanwhile, some Christian Syrians are finding unlikely allies in Lebanese Christians despite the two countries' rocky history. Nuna of the Triumphant Mercy Lebanon shared to Mission Network News that whenever she is asked by Syrian refugees why she, a Lebanese person, is helping them, she said that it "starts the conversation of who God is, and how I have inside me this hope that I want to bring to them because they are living in such a hard place."