WE WILL NOT REST UNTIL YOU ARE BACK HOME! (abducted on Monday 22 April 2013)

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Over one year ago, on 22 April 2013, the Syriac Orthodox Metropolitan of Aleppo, H.E. Gregorius Hanna Ibrahim, and H.E. Boulos al-Yazigi, the Greek Orthodox Archbishop of Aleppo and Iskenderun, were abducted by a rebel group near the Turkish-Syrian border. Their car was intercepted and the Aramean driver was shot dead, during or after the attack.

Despite contradicting reports, rumors and vague claims that have been circulating since their abduction, the World Council of Arameans (Syriacs) (“WCA”) affirms that there is still no clear information about the identity of the kidnappers, their motivation and demands, their whereabouts, the health condition of the Archbishops, and more. 

The WCA will not give up its mission to seek international attention for this case. It will keep asking investigative journalists to raise the neglected questions and keep requesting the media to highlight the missing gaps in this highly significant case. The WCA will not end its appeals to governments to investigate this case more seriously and at an internationally coordinated level. The WCA President, Mr. Johny Messo, emphasizes: “We remain hopeful that our two Archbishops may return home safe and well, particularly after the recent release of the kidnapped Aramean nuns from Ma’aloula and several foreign journalists. In the meantime, the world must hold the rebels and those who support them accountable for the abduction of two of Syria’s prominent and peaceful religious leaders.”

Since the moment the two church leaders were kidnapped, the WCA and its Member Federations have issued a number of publications on this abduction case and, moreover, have contacted many ministers, UN ambassadors and other high-ranking officials. The WCA continues to call for further investigations and support of the UN, all governments, religious leaders of all faiths, NGOs and media outlets in order to address the abduction of the two Archbishops. Such an approach will convey the right message to all the Christians across the Middle East to not loose hope in their difficult struggle to survive in their native Aramean homelands, particularly in Syria. 


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Read more articles by the WCA about the two abducted archbishops here: