Thought to comprise approximately 10 per cent of Syria’s population – with a variety of sects, including Greek Orthodox, Melkite Greek Catholics, Syriac Orthodox, Armenians, Maronites, Chaldeans, and Assyrians – the Christian community of Syria has been the subject of considerable media attention ever since unrest arose against the regime of Bashar al-Assad in March 2011.
However, rather than looking at claims of incidents of anti-Christian violence and trying to verify them, articles have generally repeated the obvious point that there are concerns that the same fate could befall Syrian Christians, as with the numerous incidents of persecution of Iraqi Christians by Islamic militants and, further, as with the outflow of hundreds of thousands of Christians from the country since 2003.
So, what are the main stories of the persecution of Christians in Syria? And, further to this, how can they be verified?
In this timely new report, Middle East analyst Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi separates the facts of Christian suffering in Syria from the propaganda originating from pro-Assad media outlets.