After more than two years, the main Christian city of the Nineveh plain is finally released, but it is a ghost town: houses have been burned, bombed, devastated, churches desecrated, walls still standing are tagged of propaganda inscriptions left by ISIS.
Jihadists might have taken everything from the displaced Christians of Qaraqosh, but they certainly did not remove their hope of returning home. And so, little by little, despite the bitterness and pain of having lost everything, it is more than a return to their house that is happening in Qaraqosh: it is a real challenge to the past and to war! And the first ones to believe in this return is a handful of Christian inhabitants of Qaraqosh. Together with volunteers and an exemplary determination they have returned since to their town since January 2017 and have already erased Daesh’s destruction of 200 shop doors, 5 schools, 300 walls of houses all of which had been dirtied with graffitied inscriptions, including also a cemetery and hospital both of which were desecrated by Daesh’s vandalism.
Hundreds of litres of paint were needed to cover and remove the traces of violence suffered by the Christian population: the violence which followed in their hasty departure to escape a certain death, on 6 August 2014. They see this violence wrought upon their town on their return, when the heads of families came to see with a heavy heart what remained of their lives. This project, is supported by SOS Chrétiens d’Orient, costing $28,124 since January and requires 135 paint pots per month, at $42 each. Thanks to your help, they have replaced war with peace to welcome the inhabitants return to Qaraqosh!