Last Syriac family leaving PYD-controlled town in Al-Hasakah

The last Christian Syriac family remaining in Amouda, a town in northern Al-Hasakah, has posted a “for sale” sign on both their house, seen above, and business properties as published by the Assyrian Democratic Organization’s Facebook page.

The announcement in the PYD-controlled town comes five days after an explosive device blew up outside one of the Jerjes family’s store, destroying it completely. No one has claimed credit for the incident.

“The PYD [the Kurdish Democratic Union] pushed the family to put up their house and lands up for sale,” Abu Jad al-Hasakawi, a local activist, told Syria Direct on Thursday.

The Syriac Network for Human Rights reported that the bombing in Amouda was a message from the Asayishe [PYD’s police force] to the Syriacs, reporting that Asayish forces have been exerting pressure on the Jerjes family for some time to sell their property in order to clear the city of Syriacs. 

“This is the policy of the YPG [the PYD's Kurdish Protection Units] to make those who oppose its policy and refuse its decisions emigrate,” Ali al-Harith, a correspondent for the opposition Step Agency in Al-Hasakeh , told Syria Direct on Wednesday.

The Jerjes family was known as supporters of the town's anti-regime protests, which may have increased the PYD’s antagonism towards the family, the Syriac Network also reported.

-May 20, 2015

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Ammar Hamou

Ammar Hammou is from Douma city in outer Damascus. He studied journalism at Damascus University and left Syria in 2011.

James Bowker

James Bowker graduated from Tufts University in 2013 with a double major in Arabic Language & Middle Eastern Studies. He has previously worked with the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) study-abroad program and as a remote translator for the Article 25 Right to Health campaign.