November 21, 2013
As some 450,000 Christians have fled Syria since a civil war erupted two years ago, the Syrian Patriarch of the Melkite Greek Catholic church has called on Christians to stay in Syria and survive a “difficult” future.
“I say to my children, stay in your country, the future will be difficult, but it will be better, God willing,” Syrian Patriarch Gregory Laham told AFP in an interview.
On the eve of a trip to the Vatican for meetings with Pope Francis, Laham urged European countries to not “encourage Syrian Christians to emigrate.”
“I say to the European countries that want to help, help people in difficulty, humanitarian cases but don’t encourage people to emigrate,” he said.