20 January 2016, The Tablet

Isis destroys oldest Christian monastery in Iraq, satellite pictures reveal

Terrorist group seeking to wipe out Christianity in Iraq and Syria brick by brick

Isis has destroyed the oldest Christian monastery in Iraq, newly released satellite images have found. St. Elijah’s, which was believed to have been built more than 1,400 years ago, stood on a hill on the outskirts of Mosul, in the north of the country.

Pictures from DigitalGlobe, a company which produces satellite imagery, showed that the monastery had been completely destroyed by Isis. It is understood that the monastery was destroyed some time in the first month after Isis took control of Mogul in August 2014.

The terrorist organisation has a policy of destroying any religious artefacts or buildings, which predates Islam.

“Our Christian history in Mosul is being barbarically levelled,” Iraq-based Catholic priest Rev Paul Thabit Habib told Associated Press. “We see it as an attempt to expel us from Iraq, eliminating and finishing our existence in this land.”

Ahmed Maher, Iraq correspondent for BBC News said: “The militants believe that Islam is the only religion that must be adopted by the followers of other faiths. And that is why they have targeted minorities and destroyed their places of worship.

“Those who have remained in these areas have been forced to choose between conversion and execution.”



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