Syria: Orthodox Christian Priest Kidnapped By ‘Unidentified Armed Group’ In Damascus Found Dead After Ransom Demand
Update: Fr. Fadi Jamil Haddad Has Been Found Dead – “This was confirmed to Fides by Fr. Haddad’s greek-orthodox confrere, who asked for anonymity. ‘His body was horribly tortured and his eyes gouged out,’ he told Fides. ‘It is a purely terrorist act. Fr. Haddad is a martyr of our church.’” Read more.
Agenzia Fides – “Damascus (Agenzia Fides) – The Greek Orthodox priest Fr. Fadi Jamil Haddad, pastor of the church of St. Elias in Qatana, a suburb of Damascus, was kidnapped by an unidentified armed group. According to information sent to Fides, the kidnappers, who three days ago kidnapped the priest and other two people, have asked the priest’s family and his church a ransom of 50 million Syrian pounds (over 550 thousand euro). The greek orthodox Christian community is deeply concerned about the priest’s fate and that of the other two kidnapped.
As reported to Fides by members of the greek orthodox community in Damascus this morning armed groups in the galaxy of the Syrian opposition launched mortar attacks on the Christian village of Kafarbohom, near Hama, killing two people and wounding two others. An armed group entered the village and kidnapped 20 women asking their families for a ransom of 10 million Syrian pounds (about 150 thousand euro), with the threat of killing them all.
According to Fides sources, these facts confirm that at this stage of the conflict the Christian communities are under pressure, for several reasons: because they are less and less involved in the ranks of armed rebels; for private vendettas; or even for simple reasons of speculation and research of money by armed gangs in the area.
Among the various Christian communities in Syria, the greek orthodox is the largest (with about 500 thousand faithful) and is concentrated mainly in the western part of the country and in Damascus.” Source – Agenzia Fides.
Syria: Car Bomb Timed To Detonate In Christian Quarter Of Damascus As People Were Travelling To Church, 10 Killed – “A car bomb exploded outside a police station in the Old City of Damascus on Sunday, drawing the city’s historical Christian quarter into the civil war… ‘The bomb exploded as people were moving to go to Churches for Sunday mass. It exploded just outside the police station. There was a bus stop right beside it … Terrorists are doing this,’ said George, a Christian who, like many residents in Bab Touma lives in fear of the rebel fighters trying to gain control of the capital.” Read more.