Aleppo Armenian Community on the Brink of Demise
ALEPPO—The continued rocket fire by rebel forces in the direction of the mostly-Armenian-populated Nor Kyugh neighborhood of Aleppo has forced officials to declare the area a disaster zone, and threatens the survival of the city’s Armenian community.
The Aleppo News Agency reported that incessant rocket fire from rebel forces, a significant number of which are reportedly Turks or radical Islamists, continued in Nor Kyugh, endangering civilians and causing massive destruction.
Residential buildings in Nor Kyugh have been destroyed or partially demolished, while Armenian community centers and local businesses have been damaged as a result of continued shelling.
Nor Kyugh residents are fleeing the neighborhood, some heading toward the seaside city of Latakia, which is already overflowing with Armenian refugees from the insurgence of Al Qaeda-affiliated terrorist groups in Kessab earlier this spring. Others are seeking refuge in other parts of Aleppo that are not currently under heavy rocket fire, while some are relocating to the basement of the St. Gregory the Illuminator Church, which was damaged earlier this week as a result of the rebel attacks.
Armenian community institutions in Nor Kyugh have also sustained heavy damages, among them the Karen Jeppe Jemaran, the Zavarian and Sahakian schools, as well as the Zavarian and Sahakian kindergartens, the Armenian Catholic Holy Trinity and Zvartnots School, the Arevelk print shop, the Armenian Relief Society’s clinic and social service center and residential building that are owned by the Prelacy.
Armenian-owned businesses and stores, as well as residences are either in complete or partial destruction, making life unbearable for the citizens of the town.