Near Eastern, Syriac and Arabic speaking Christians know the challenges posed by Islam all too well. Yet the latest news is even more concerning. Decapitating, book burning Muslim extremists are targeting the minority Christian communities, which have shrunk due to threats and to emigration, not to mention the usual problems faced by anyone living in the Near East. Lord, have mercy.
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From USA TODAY
ISIL abducts dozens of Christians in Syria
BEIRUT (AP) — Islamic State militants have abducted at least 70 Christians, including women and children, after overrunning a string of villages in northeastern Syria, activists and relatives said Tuesday. The Sunni extremist group, which follows a radical interpretation of Islam, has repeatedly targeted religious and ethnic minorities in Syria and Iraq since seizing control of large swaths of both countries. Islamic State fighters have ransacked churches, demolished Shiite and Sunni Muslim shrines, and enslaved women of the Yazidi community, a tiny sect IS considers heretical. The latest assault began before dawn on Monday, when the militants swept through the villages nestled along the banks of Khabur River near the town of Tal Tamr in Hassakeh province. The area is predominantly inhabited by Assyrians, an indigenous Christian people who trace their roots back to the ancient Mesopotamians.
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