Quick Facts About Christianity in Syria



  • According to the CIA fact book Christians make up 10% of the population in Syria.1
  • The population of Syrians belonging to various Christian denominations before the civil war was 1.25 million.2
  • The last estimate for the Christian population of Syria was only 500,000, which was made in October 2016.3
  • It is estimated that in 2015 around 700,000 Syrian Christians sought refuge in other countries.4
  • Though seen as politically repressive Bashar Assad’s Government is tolerant of Christians and other religious minorities. Under his government’s secular nationalist ideology their position was relatively secure up until the civil war broke out in 2011.5
  • Many rebel groups consider all Christians to be in collaboration with the regime, making them a target for these groups as well as ISIS.6
  • In September 2013, 36 Muslim religious leaders issued a fatwa allowing Sunni Muslims to seize the property of Christians and other non-Muslims.7
  • In February 2015, ISIS invaded 35 Assyrian Christian villages, and kidnapping over 300 Christians. ISIS released 23 people in March 2015 and demanded £15 million to release the 230 remaining people. Villagers who were not taken, over 1,200, fled to other villages (Hassake and Qamishli), abandoning the 35 villages for months. They began to return in June 2015, after Christian and Kurdish fighters retook the villages.8




[1] CIA World Fact Book, People and Society: Syria (Update 12 Jan, 2017).

[2][3] [4][7][8] 2011, Christians in Syria 1.25 Million; 2016, Christians in Syria Less Than 500,000. (31 Oct 2016). Cnsnews.com

[5][6] Religion and Conflict in Syria.(n.d.). About.com.


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