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Christian Priest Entrusts Muslim to Protect Idleb Church

Former Syrian volleyball player entrusted with protection of Idleb's Church of the Virgin Mary
Christian Priest Entrusts Muslim to Protect Idleb Church

The head of Idleb’s Greek Orthodox Church, Ibrahim Farah, has entrusted a Muslim man to oversee the safety of the church as the priest flees the captured city.

Zelal Badie al-Moallem, a former member of Syria's national volleyball team, told Zaman al-Wasl that Farah handed him the keys of the Church of the Virgin Mary before his departure.

"I've been entrusted by Father Farah with the task of keeping the church safe," Moallem said.

Moallem, a relief worker, said Father Farah is a symbol of coexistence and his choice reflects his trust in the rebels.

Syria's Islamist rebels, who captured northern city of Idleb in March, have employed a number of policies to secure civilian communities in the captured city, including Christians.

Fatah Army, an alliance of Islamist groups, formed a security committee consisting of all rebel factions who participated in the city’s liberation, including: Nusra Front, Jund al-Aqsa, Jaish al-Sunnah, al-Sham Legion and Suqour al-Sham.

A Zaman al-Wasl reporter claimed a number of Christian families refused to flee the city despite the deteriorating situation as the daily aerial bombardment by regime warplanes continues.

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