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Iraqi Christians seek refuge in Syria.

By September 21, 2004

Iraq (MNN)–There’s word of another Christian exodus in Iraq. This time, the numbers indicate ten to 30-thousand may be fleeing the violence that follows them in Iraq.

Following five church bombings and an attack on a seminary, thousands of believers sought sanctuary in Syria. Voice of the Martyrs’ Todd Nettleton says Christians believe they are an unprotected religious minority, a fact born out in continued oppression. “Many Christians are choosing to leave Iraq, or leave into the Kurdish areas of Iraq in order to have a better chance to be safe from radical Islamic people who are gaining more control and more power and acting out violently against Christians.”

Many observers think the violence is more targeted anti-Western sentiment, confusing Christianity with U-S interests. The issue has forced a change in how outreach continues in this country so hostile to believers.

Nettleton explains that their distribution and support network is made up of nationals, so as not to attract unwanted attention. “We have not had Americans in Iraq in the last couple of months, so it won’t change our work, really, on the ground there. We are working with the Christians there. We’re trying to provide aid to them as well as printed Bibles and other Christian literature.”

Pray for those involved in continued outreach throughout the Middle East, that their faith remains strong.

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