“May the world heed the cries, tears and the prayers of the children of Syria.”
These were the words of the head of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church who has decried the recent bombing of an Armenian Catholic School that killed one child and wounded 60 others.
According to a report by Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), Patriarch Gregory III Laham responded to the tragedy, saying: “What is the point of all this carnage tantamount to a war of extermination?”
The incident occurred 15 April when the bomb landed in the school playground during a spate of violence in Damascus. The Patriarch said that some of the children suffered injuries that were “life-changing”.
He added that another 10 children were injured in separate attacks, some outside a Greek Melkite Church in Damascas, and others in the suburb of Duel’a.
“These attacks on our schools, children, churches and homes are criminal attacks with the aim of intimidating Christians who find themselves increasingly targeted,” he said. He called on the United Nations and European Union to offer aid.
“Do you want to kill this nation?” he asked.
Syria has been ravaged by a three-year long civil war as rebel forces attempt to overthrow the Bashar al Assad-led government. Millions have fled to other countries to escape the conflict.