The historic St. Elijah monastery, situated on a hill near Mosul and dating from the 6th century, was razed by Daesh in late 2014, following the occupation of the area by the terrorist organization, Associated Press reported on Wednesday.
“I can’t describe my sadness,” Father Paul Thabit Habib commented. “Our Christian history in Mosul is being barbarically leveled. We see it as an attempt to expel us from Iraq, eliminating and finishing our existence in this land.”
Satellite images released by AP show that the ancient monastery has been completely demolished.
Another dagger to Middle Eastern Christians' heart: Oldest Christian monastery in Iraq reduced to rubble by ISIS. pic.twitter.com/XB8yXvd0m2— Serge (@Zinvor) January 20, 2016
In Syria, militants from Daesh blew up the Church of the Virgin Mary in northeast of the country on Easter Sunday 2015.
The UK-based charity Aid to the Church in Need issued a worrying report to the British House of Lords last fall, warning that Christianity in Iraq and Syria would be gravely threatened, if not entirely extinguished, by 2020, if Daesh is not stopped.