President Donald Trump announced on October 12 that the U.S. will send $50 million in emergency financial aid to Christians, religious minorities and human rights organizations in war-torn Syria, reports The Hindu.
A statement from the White House said the fund will aid “Syrian human rights defenders, civil society organizations, and reconciliation efforts directly supporting ethnic and religious minority victims of the conflict.”
The U.S. condemns the persecution of Christians and we pledge our support to Christians all over. —US President Donald Trump
“It will also go toward increased accountability, removal of explosive remnants of war, community security for stabilization assistance, documenting human rights abuses and international humanitarian law violations, and support for survivors of gender-based violence and torture,” according to the statement.
Speaking at the 2019 Values Voters Summit, Trump said, “The U.S. condemns the persecution of Christians and we pledge our support to Christians all over. And we pledge our support to Christian communities everywhere suffering under the brutal heel of oppression and violence.” He added that his administration is committed to protecting religious minorities in the Middle East and around the world.
White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham echoed the president’s sentiments. She said, “Ensuring freedom and safety of ethnic and religious minorities remains a top priority for this administration.”
Meantime, a report published by Aid to the Church in Need, warned that Christianity may disappear from Iraq and Syria.
From 1.5 million Christians in 2003, experts estimated that there are now about 120,000 to 150,000 believers in the country, an alarming decline of more than 90% within a generation.
In Syria, the country’s civil war, which began in 2011, forced Christians to leave their homelands for safer grounds. The Christian population is believed to have dropped by two-thirds from 2 million eight years ago, reports Catholic news website, Aleteia.
The Catholic charity feared that, “Were there to be another ISIS-style assault on the faithful, it could result in the Church’s disappearance.”