Christians escaping the two-year civil war in Syria will soon have their own humanitarian aid camp, the Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency of Turkey reported. The separate camp for Christians is being built near Mor Abraham Syriac Monastery near the Turkish town of Midyat, about 30 miles from the Turkish-Syrian border. Catholic Relief Services reported in March that approximately 200 Syrian Christian refugees in that area were sheltering in local churches, afraid to go to the other 17 relief camps on the border, where Turkey’s government is providing humanitarian assistance to an estimated 200,000 refugees, most of them Syrian Sunni Muslims. “A month ago, some churches met with the [Turkish] foreign minister, and they requested that for Christians it would be better to open another camp,” the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees spokesperson in Turkey, Metin Corabatir, said on April 12. The U.N.H.C.R. estimates that the conflict between pro-government forces and rebels in Syria has killed as many as 70,000 people and produced more than a million refugees, most of them children.
A Camp Apart for Christian Refugees