Deadly blasts target Christian businesses in Syria

Two bombs exploded in a predominantly Christian part of the city of Qamishli, in northern Syria, on Sunday evening (24 January), killing three believers and injuring up to 20.

The first to explode was a bomb set on a bicycle outside Star Café, a Christian-run business in the mainly Christian al-Wusta district of the city. Those killed in the attack have been identified as Bassam Jacob, Fawzi Gabro and Moris Khajo. A further 20 people were injured in the attack. Two of them are said to be in critical condition.

The second bomb targeted Joseph Bakery, another Christian-run local business. As yet, no one has claimed responsibility for the attacks.

On 30 December, 13 believers were killed when three Christian-run restaurants were deliberated bombed in Qamishli. Islamic State (IS) militants later claimed responsibility for the attacks.

The city of Qamishli has a long Christian heritage. Many of the city’s inhabitants are descendants of Christians who fled the Armenian and Assyrian genocide a century ago, and even today its mayor is a Christian. Barnabas has helped feed hungry Christians in Qamishli.

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