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One Of The Oldest Christian Sites In The World Destroyed By ISIS

January 22, 2016

The monastery of St. Elijah, or Dair Mar Elia, which sits on a river bank just south of Mosul, Iraq has been destroyed by ISIS.


This monastery has been standing for over 1,400 years. To put that in perspective, some parts of the bible were still being written at that point. This is just the latest in a series of ISIS’ attempt to wipe Christianity out of Iraq.

Before and after

Before and after

Under the rule of Saddam Hussein, the monastery was within the limits of a military base and therefore untouchable.

Christians are mourning the loss of such a valuable piece of history. Theres no telling if it was looted for artifacts by ISIS beforehand.


From the New York Times:

The Islamic State destroyed one of the oldest Christian sites in Iraq as part of its campaign against ancient sites in the country, according to satellite photographs published by The Associated Press on Wednesday and confirmed by Iraqi officials and historians.

The monastery of St. Elijah, or Dair Mar Elia, stood for more than 1,400 years above a riverbed south of the city of Mosul, which the Islamic State seized from Iraqi forces in June 2014. The satellite photographs — taken by DigitalGlobe, a company with headquarters in Westminster, Colo. — showed that the monastery was razed in late August or September 2014, including the site’s square complex of partly ruined rooms and a largely intact sanctuary that dated from the 11th century.

Read more at the New York Times

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