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Syrian Catholic Church Offers Mosul Seminary for Treatment of COVID-19 Victims

Area was Devastated During Islamic Occupation

Forty-eight single rooms, made available to accommodate people infected with Coronavirus who do not need to undergo intensive care or have to spend a quarantine isolation period after recovery. The Syro-Catholic Archdiocese of Mosul offered the political and health authorities of the Nineveh Province, called to manage the Covid-19 emergency, the premises and structures that in the past hosted the patriarchal seminary, at a Syro-Catholic parish in the North Iraqi city that remained under the control of the self-proclaimed Islamic State (Daesh) for many years. The Syro Catholic archdiocese has also made a commitment to provide food and logistical assistance to the sick and convalescents who will be hospitalized in the structure, receiving the gratitude of the director of the public health department of the province of Nineveh, who in recent days verified in person the suitability of the premises made available. In particular, the infected from Qaraqosh, a city on the Nineveh Plain once inhabited mostly by Christians, should be hospitalized.

In April 2020, as reported by Agenzia Fides, the works of reconstruction and restoration of the church of St Thomas in Mosul should have begun, devastated – but not completely destroyed – in the time when the Iraqi metropolis was under the control of the jihadists. The reconstruction of the Christian place of worship should have received support by UNESCO, thanks above all to substantial funding provided by the United Arab Emirates

After the years of the jihadist occupation of Mosul and more than a year and a half since its release, the church of St. Thomas, still full of rubble, hosted a “Mass for peace” on Thursday 28 February 2019 celebrated by Syrian Catholic Archbishop Boutros Moshi. After the liberation from jihadist rule, the return of IDPs to their traditional settlement areas has always been indicated as a priority for Iraqi local authorities. Nonetheless, even before the explosion of the health emergency, several researches and investigations into the counter-exodus processes agreed in indicating how the percentage of Christian IDPs who returned to their homes in Mosul and the Province of Nineveh was rather low.

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