Search This Blog

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Syria: Greek Orthodox priest abducted in Damascus is found dead

Father Fady was one of the symbols of national unity. Grant mercy on Father Fady Haddad, a martyr of the nation and humanity, and shame on those criminal killers who are destroying the country.


Fady al-Haddad served the St Elie parish in Qatanaa, a mixed Christian and Muslim town of 15,000 inhabitants 20 kilometers (12 miles) west of Damascus. (Al Arabiya)
Fady al-Haddad served the St Elie parish in Qatanaa, a mixed Christian and Muslim town of 15,000 inhabitants 20 kilometers (12 miles) west of Damascus


BEIRUT -- A Greek Orthodox priest has been found slain after being kidnapped near the Syrian capital of Damascus, the Syrian government and the Vatican news service reported Thursday.

The body of the Rev. Fadi Jamil Haddad, pastor of St. Elias Church in Qatana, outside Damascus, was discovered  in the Jaramana district  of the capital, reported Agenzia Fides, the Vatican news service. The site was not far from the area where he was kidnapped by an “unidentified armed group" last Friday, the agency said.

The Vatican agency quoted a colleague saying the priest had been “horribly tortured.”
The official Syrian news service said the priest was found with a gunshot wound to his head. The government news agency blamed the crime on “terrorists,” its usual characterization of the armed opposition fighting to oust President Bashar Assad.

According to the official  account, the priest was abducted while seeking the release of another person who had been kidnapped by militants.

But it was not clear if the priest’s slaying was political, sectarian or criminal in nature. Many Syrians have complained of a breakdown in law and order and a spike in kidnapping for ransom and other crimes as security has deteriorated. Opportunistic criminals have moved to take advantage of the nation's security void. 

The Vatican news agency reported that the priest’s kidnappers had demanded a ransom equivalent to about $715,000 for the priest’s release. “It was, however, impossible to find the money and meet this exorbitant demand,” reported Agenzia Fides. 

The Greek Orthodox population is considered the largest Christian denomination in Syria, where Christians represent perhaps 10% of the population. Syria is overwhelmingly Muslim.

Christian leaders in Syria say their community, which has ancient roots, is in a precarious position. Some Christians have joined the rebellion and called for Assad to step down. But  many Syrian Christians back Assad, whose administration has been tolerant of religious minorities even as it  has crushed political dissent. 

Assad has tried to rally support among Christians and other minorities against the armed rebellion, which is led by the nation's Sunni Muslim majority. There have been reports from Syria of government efforts to arm Christian communities. But some Christian leaders have urged their co-religionists to remain neutral in the conflict.

Some Christians voice fears that Islamists will take over the secular Syrian government and that the nation will experience the kind of sectarian violence, including the bombing of churches and torching of Christian shops, that ravaged neighboring Iraq after the U.S.-led invasion toppled Saddam Hussein. Hussein, like Assad, was a secular autocrat who tolerated Christian religious practice. Tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians fled to Syria in the aftermath of Hussein’s fall.



No comments:

Post a Comment


Category

1915 Armenian Genocide 21st-century Christian martyrs‎ africa al assad Al Qaeda albania anti-Morsi protests Apostles Arab Christian Arab-Orthodox Archimandrite Tikhon Shevkunov army Asia Australia bank BBC Belarusian Orthodox Church Bethlehem bible Bible movies bible translations bulgaria Bulgarian Orthodox Church Byzantine byzantine music C.I.A. Cairo China Christian Armenians christianity christians christmas Christmas Traditions Christmas tree church Conspiracy Constantinople coptic church copts cyprus daily news Documentary Easter economy Ecumenical Patriarch Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople egypt egypt pope elder Elder Ephraim of Vatopaidi elder joseph of vatopaidi elder Paisios Elder Porphyrios english subtitles Epiphany europe food Fr Seraphim Rose france FREE books FREE Greetings Cards fyrmacedonia Georgian Orthodox Church germany greece greek greek food greek music Greek Orthodox Church Greek Orthodox Easter greek orthodoxy health and medicine Holy Fathers Holy Scripture Holy Tradition icon Internet Interview iran islam islamist israel Italy jerusalem Jesus Christ jews jihad killed libya mafia Middle East Miraculous Icon monastery money mother of god mount athos Mount Sinai Movie Trailers music muslim muslims news orthodox church Orthodox Church in America pakistan Palestine patristic tradition photo photos picture politics pope Prophecy protests quotes recipes religion romania romanian orthodox church Russia Russian Orthodox Church saint Saints science Shroud of Turin Son of God spy St Nicholas of Myra syria The Mount Athos Food Evolution theotokos travel turkey tv UK Ukraine Ukrainian Orthodox Church usa Vatican vatopaidi video war Watch FREE full movie world
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...