Escalation / Destabilization Conflict

Syrian opposition fighters seize 12 nuns from Christian village

Mother superior says nuns abducted from convent have been taken with three other women to town held by rebels


  •  Associated Press in Damascus
  •,              Tuesday 3 December 2013 09.04 EST
(FILES) A Syrian nun lights candles insi
A Syrian nun lights candles in the church of Mar Takla in the Christian village of Maaloula, from where 12 nuns have been abducted. Photograph: Louai Beshara/AFP/Getty Images

Opposition fighters have abducted 12 nuns from a predominantly Christian village near Damascus and taken them to a rebel-held town, the mother superior of a Syrian convent said on Tuesday.

Febronia Nabhan, Mother Superior at Saidnaya Convent, said that the nuns and three other women had been seized from another convent in the predominantly Christian village of Maaloula and taken to the nearby town of Yabroud on Monday.

On the same day, Syrian rebels had captured large parts of Maaloula, around 40 miles  north-east of the capital,  after three days of fighting.

The state news agency Sana reported on Monday that six nuns, including the Maaloula convent’s mother superior Pelagia Sayaf, were trapped in the nunnery.

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