Syria: Christian sites damaged by Turkish bombing

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Syria, St Maron, Maron, Maroun, Maro, Afrin, Kurds, Turks
On Friday, the Syrian government issued a statement to Fides in which they said Christian archaelogical sites in north-eastern Syria, had been damaged or destroyed in air raids carried out by the Turkish military airforce. The Director of Syrian antiquities, Mahmoud Hamoud, was quoted saying that the bombing had devastated the area of Barad, which includes the remains of many Byzantine churches and monasteries and tombs dating back to the first centuries of Christianity.

Since 2011 it has been included in the UNESCO World Heritage list. Mr Hamoud said the ‘Tomb of Saint Maron’ and the remains of the fourth century cathedral of San Giuliano, had also been destroyed.

St Maron was a 4th-century Syriac Christian priest who became a hermit monk in the Taurus Mountains. After his death, his followers founded a religious Christian movement that became known as the Syriac Maronite Church, in full communion with the Holy See and the Catholic Church. The religious community which grew from this movement are the modern Maronites.