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Syrian Armenian Christian Refugees Avoid Turkey

“Syrian Armenians remember the 1915 genocide perpetuated by Turkey against Armenians. Many Armenians living in Syria came there after surviving the genocide. With the genocide such a recent memory, Syrian Armenians are fearful that they will may face even greater challenges if they flee their war-torn country to Turkey.”

Even aside from historical memory, present-day reality is little better. The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) 2018 Annual Report, has included Turkey among its Tier 2 violators — that is, countries where religious freedom violations are systematic, ongoing, and/or egregious. The USCIRF’s 2018 Annual Report on Turkey notes that “in 2017, the state of religious freedom in Turkey worsened.” Among the signs of this deterioration, the report states, is the fact that most of Turkey’s “longstanding religious freedom concerns remain unresolved, including the return of expropriated minority properties, the delay in providing dual citizenship to Greek Orthodox Metropolitans so they can participate in the church’s Holy Synod, and equal funding for religious minority community buildings from the public budget.”

“Syrian Armenian Refugees Avoid Turkey,” International Christian Concern, November 25, 2018:

11/25/18 Syria (International Christian Concern) – A new report by journalist Serdar Korucu indicates that Syrian Armenian refugees are intentionally avoiding Turkey. Instead, they chose to travel much more dangerous paths to other regional countries, or even Armenia.

Armenians are an ethnic group who are also Christian. According to the report, Syrian Armenians remember the 1915 genocide perpetuated by Turkey against Armenians. Many Armenians living in Syria came there after surviving the genocide. With the genocide such a recent memory, Syrian Armenians are fearful that they will may face even greater challenges if they flee their war-torn country to Turkey.

Christians have experienced multiple genocides in the Middle East. The historical implications of these genocides continue to haunt those who are now facing a similar situation….

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