"The Assad regime did not distinguish between those who rebelled against his tyranny and repression; he crushed them all, violated their human rights in a brutal way. The religious, ethnic and sectarian background of any Syrian rebel has not saves him.
Assad continues what his father started, killing hundreds of thousands of people from all sects, young and elderly, men, women and children, all for one reason: To retain power at the expense of the country and against the will of people who asked for freedom and democracy.
His shelling of civilian areas with rockets and explosive barrels, chemical weapons, of besieging towns and cities, are all evidence of his repressive policies – policies that contradict the teachings of Christianity and human rights.
Christians were oppressed under Assad's rule, just like all other Syrians. The regime claims of protection are no more than shameless slander, evidenced in demographic and sociological facts.
We were forced to leave our lands more than ever before Assad. His regime helped and sought the systematic displacement of tens of thousands of Christian families. Our Muslim brothers know our long history of peaceful co-existance with them, as well as with other ethnic and religious components of Syrian society.
During Assad's rule, churches and clergymen were transformed into institutions under the orders of security forces, forcing them to lose their humanitarian and spiritual role. Thus, it is no longer strange to see a bishop or a patriarch boast about his position of support for a criminal like Assad.
Our demand for freedom obliges us to reveal the falsehood of those persons wearing the masks of clergymen, while they are in fact security men who have chosen to be the enemies of the Christ, Christianity and all the sons of Syrian people."
33 Christian activists and intellectuals signed the statement, including Karim Jalloul, Marwan Khouri and Samir Matar.