Churches Occupied, Mosques Destroyed, Nuns and Orphans Kidnapped in Iraq

admin | 07 July 2014
Islamists militants who seized parts of northern and western Iraq last month posted images online Saturday of at least ten shrines and mosques they claim they have destroyed in the province of Nineveh. Photos show bulldozers knocking down Sunni Arab and Sufi shrines and explosives destroying six Shiite mosques.
Churches Occupied, Mosques Destroyed, Nuns and Orphans Kidnapped in Iraq
Sister Utoor Joseph (left) and Sister Miskintah, who disappeared on late Saturday, June 28 in Mosul (photo: Ishtar TV).

Residents of Mosul, which is the capital of Nineveh, said the militants have also occupied two cathedrals belonging to Chaldean and Orthodox Christians. Crosses on the churches have been replaced by the black flag of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the group which recently declared the establishment of an Islamic caliphate.

On Tuesday, two nuns and three orphans went missing from an orphanage in Mosul. It is believed they have been kidnapped by ISIS militants. On Saturday, a senior Christian leader in Iraq appealed for their release. “We are appealing for scholars in Mosul and tribal sheikhs to help us release two nuns and three orphans,” said Chaldean Patriarch Louis Sako. “Christians are not party to these events,” Sako added. “We lived together side-by-side (with Muslims) for 14 centuries. We still want to communicate and live together.”

Iraq’s Christian community has dwindled to a small fraction of what it had once been — once numbering more than a million nationwide, there are now fewer than 400,000 across the country. Nearly all of Mosul’s Christians have fled since the city fell to ISIS on June 10th; ISIS members bombed an Armenian church near al-Salaam hospital and ransacked the Church of the Holy Spirit. Two days after the raid on Mosul, ISIS imposed Sharia law and began demanding a poll tax from Christians. On June 21st, ISIS members raped a mother and daughter who could not afford to pay the poll tax and killed four women for not wearing veils

Система Orphus Do you see a mistake in the text? Highlight it and click: Ctrl + Enter
Since you are here…

…we do have a small request. More and more people visit Orthodoxy and the World website. However, resources for editorial are scarce. In comparison to some mass media, we do not make paid subscription. It is our deepest belief that preaching Christ for money is wrong.

Having said that, Pravmir provides daily articles from an autonomous news service, weekly wall newspaper for churches, lectorium, photos, videos, hosting and servers. Editors and translators work together towards one goal: to make our four websites possible -,, and Therefore our request for help is understandable.

For example, 5 dollars a month is it a lot or little? A cup of coffee? It is not that much for a family budget, but it is a significant amount for Pravmir.

If everyone reading Pravmir could donate 5 dollars a month, they would contribute greatly to our ability to spread the word of Christ, Orthodoxy, life's purpose, family and society.

Choose currency:
Other amount
Most popular authors
Dear Friends,

Our website exists owing to your generous assistance, thanks to the funds donated by our beloved readers.

Please assist us in the continuation of our work.