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IS kidnaps 220 Assyrian Christians in Syria

IANS  |  Damascus 

The number of Assyrian Christians kidnapped by the Islamic State (IS) Sunni radical group in northern Syria has risen to 220 over the past three days, a monitoring group reported Thursday.

The IS kidnapped the Assyrians from 11 villages in the town of Tal Tamr, which is considered the capital of the Syrian Assyrians in the northern province of al-Hasakah, Xinhua news agency reported citing the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR). The IS recently unleashed an offensive against Assyrian towns and villages.

Citing sources, the SOHR said those abducted were taken to an area in the Abdul-Aziz mountain southwest of Tal Tamr, adding that the IS managed to capture people around that town, amid a large wave of displacement among the Assyrians to nearby areas.

It cited Assyrian sources as saying that negotiations with the IS were taking place via mediators for the release of the kidnapped people.

The same sources confirmed that the IS also burnt down two churches in the countryside of Tal Tamr.

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First Published: Thu, February 26 2015. 15:28 IST