Tbilisi, April 17, 2015
State Minister of Georgia for Diaspora Issues Gela Dumbadze together with President of the Assyrian National Congress of Georgia David Adamov discussed the possibility of granting asylum in Georgia to Assyrian Christians from Syria, reports Sedmitza.ru with reference to the Newsgeorgia agency on Thursday.
Since “the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant” (ISIS) terrorist group invaded a part of Northern Iraq in summer 2014, more than 1.8 million Iraqi residents – many of whom are Christians – have become refugees. Later IS undertook their offensive in the north-east of Syria. According to information provided by representatives of the Assyrian community, a band of over 1,500 men murdered several dozen innocent residents, and more than 200 Assyrians were kidnapped. During their attacks the IS militants burned down two very ancient churches.
“They are waiting for a concrete announcement that Georgia is ready to receive a portion of the refugees, at least the children, whereupon specific steps will be taken. Priest Seraphim, who was present at the meeting, mentioned that they have already been contacted by 500 Georgian families who were willing to adopt Assyrian children,” said G. Dumbadze to the journalists after the meeting.
According to D. Adamov, there are plans to form a special committee that will consider matters related to sheltering Assyrian Christians in Georgia. In addition to this, Georgia is considering giving Assyrian children the possibility to take a vacation in Georgia.
The terrifying rise of ISIS, which has seized substantial territories of Iraq and Syria, became one of the most important global problems in 2014. The group, according to CIA, numbers around 30,000 militants. It declared a caliphate on the territories it occupied and it is striving to invade more lands. There is, however, no common front of struggle against IS: the government troops of Syria and Iraq, the international coalition headed by the USA (which is still confining itself to air strikes) as well as Iraqi and Syrian Kurds are currently fighting against “the Islamic State”. As a result of combat operations several thousand civilian residents were killed, hundreds of thousands of civilians became refugees, and several thousand more were taken hostage by the IS extremists.