(JNS.org) Two Syrian Christian archbishops have
reportedly been freed after being kidnapped at gunpoint outside their home in
Aleppo a day earlier, Al Jazeera
The Dormition of Our Lady Greek Orthodox church in Aleppo, Syria. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.
Ibrahim, head of the Syrian Orthodox Church in Aleppo, and Bishop Boulos
Yaziji, head of the Greek Orthodox Church in Aleppo, the largest Christian
denomination in Syria, were kidnapped after their driver was killed. The two
Christian leaders were reportedly on a humanitarian mission at the time.
It is unclear
who was behind the abduction. The rebels and the Syrian government blamed each
Christian humanitarian and advocacy group that is active in Syria, also
confirmed the archbishops’ release in a statement.
L’Oeuvre d’Orient rejoices at the news of their release, it deplores the murder
of the driver,” the advocacy group said in a statement.
despite the some reports of the archbishops being freed, the New York Times reported that the main
Syrian rebel group, National Coalition of Revolutionary and Opposition Forces,
said the archbishops are still being held.
Christians, who comprise 10 percent of Syria’s estimated population of 22
million, have been put into a difficult situation by the civil war. On one
hand, many support the rebellion against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. But
at the same time, under Assad they were a protected minority. Many Christians
fear that if Assad is overthrown and replaced by Islamists, they will face