May 20, 2014 - 15:10 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Syrian rebels are besieging Aleppo, the nation’s largest city, leading to “a new wave of the exodus of Christians,” a local prelate said, according to Catholic Culture.
“The families waited for high school to end, then they took their luggage, closed their homes and fled to the coast and to Lebanon, using the only road link with the outside world still viable,” said Armenian Catholic Archbishop Boutros Marayati of Aleppo. “Maybe they will come back in four months. Perhaps they will never come back again.”
“The areas where there are large power stations and water supply lines are all in the hands of the rebels, that open and close the valves to force the regime to negotiate,” Archbishop Marayati told the Fides news agency. “We do not know what these negotiations aim to reach. We are with the people, and we do not understand very well what is going on around us.”
At least 150,000 people have been killed in Syria's three-year-old civil war, a third of them civilians, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
Before the civil war, Syria was home to 80000 Armenians. At present, about 20000 left the country – mainly for Armenia, Lebanon and the U.S. About 100 Armenians died in Syria during 3 years of war.