News in Bet-Nahren, Assyria

by Zinda Magazine
Posted: Wednesday, June 21, 2000 01:43 pm CST


(ZNDA: Tur-Abdin) The American Ambassador to Turkey, Mark Parris, visited Mor Gabriel Monastery near Midyat, Turkey on the first day of June. A large Turkish press was present when several participants inquired about the return of the Syriac-Assyrian people to Tur-Abdin. The issue of the emigration of this small Christian community in south-east Turkey has become a serious concern as the government of Turkey continues to move its Kurdish citizens into Christian villages. There has been no compensation nor plan to move out what locals often refer to as the "squatters". Mr. Parris was also asked about the educational needs of the Christians in Turkey. His Eminence Mor Timotheos Samuel Aktas, the Syrian Orthodox Church's Archbishop of Turabdin, told the Ambassador that unless the Syriac language can officially be taught the Church will disappear in Turkey.

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