Bagdad, 28 Sya’ban 1435/26 June 2014 (MINA) – Thousands of Iraqis have fled their homes after militants from the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) attacked Christian areas in northern Iraq.
The Iraqi Christians waited at a checkpoint near the city of Arbil on Wednesday to cross into the northern Kurdish region to take refuge there, Press TV quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting, Thursday.
The Takfiri militants from the terrorist group are reportedly pushing ahead toward Iraq’s Kurdish regions.
Witnesses say what began as random gunfire quickly evolved into rockets and heavy artillery fire in Christian areas.
“First there was gun fire and then we heard rockets fired at the Christian areas. Peshmergas (Kurdish soldiers) were defending and we fled. The situation got worse and we fled,” one of the internally displaced people said.
On June 10, the Takfiri militants took control of the Nineveh provincial capital Mosul, in a lightning advance, which was followed by the fall of Tikrit, located 140 kilometers (87 miles) northwest of the capital Baghdad.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has said that the country’s security forces would confront the terrorists, calling the seizure of Mosul a “conspiracy”.
He has also blamed Saudi Arabia and Qatar for the security crisis and growing terrorism in his country, and denounced the Al Saud regime as a major supporter of global terrorism. (T/P012/E01)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)