19236Syria nuns taken from Maaloula in new video: Al-Jazeera
- Feb 11, 2014http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Middle-East/2014/Feb-09/246852-syria-nuns-taken-from-maaloula-in-new-video-al-jazeera.ashx#axzz2t1IiKXAZ
Syria nuns taken from Maaloula in new video: Al-Jazeera
February 09, 2014
DOHA: A group of nuns from the historic Christian-majority town of
Maalula in Syria appeared in a new video broadcast by the Qatar-based
satellite news channel Al-Jazeera on Sunday.
The women are reportedly 12 nuns from a Greek Orthodox convent of Mar
Takla in Maalula who were taken by gunmen in early December. Al-Jazeera
said the video it broadcast on Sunday was recorded on February 5.
They appeared in the recording without audio, but a commentator said
"they say they are in good health, haven't been mistreated... and they
are waiting for their release to return to the convent".
The report gave no indication of where the nuns were being held, but
said that they were "Syrian and Lebanese" and had been "kidnapped".
On December 6, the station broadcast a short video of the nuns in which
they denied they had been kidnapped.
They were reported missing from the town north of Damascus after rebel
forces, including jihadists, seized control of Maalula in early December.
Religious officials said 12 nuns and three maids had gone missing from
the convent, although one of the nuns in the video said they were 13
nuns and 3 "civilians".
Media close to the Syrian regime had accused rebels of using the nuns as
human shields, and fears were expressed for their safety.
In the latest footage, the nuns "thank all those who are seeking to
obtain their release and call for the release of all prisoners",
Al-Jazeera reported them as saying.
It said "the kidnappers are demanding the release of women held in
Syrian prisons to set the nuns free", without elaborating.
Maalula, a picturesque village cut into the cliffs some 55 kilometres
(35 miles) from Damascus, has long been a symbol of the ancient
Christian presence in Syria.
Its residents are some of the few left in the world who speak Aramaic,
the language Jesus Christ is believed to have spoken.
(The Daily Star :: Lebanon News :: http://www.dailystar.com.lb)