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Report: Over 120 churches damaged war in Syria since 2011

FILE - This February 21, 2013 file photo, the altar of Judeida church is seen damaged by mortar shell, at the Christian village of Judeida, in Idlib province, Syria. The Qatar-based Syrian Network for Human Rights, a Syrian war monitor associated with the opposition said in its report Monday, Sept. 9, 2019, that over 120 Christian places of worship have been damaged or destroyed by all sides in the country’s eight-year conflict. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla, File)

BEIRUT — A Syrian war monitor associated with the opposition says over 120 Christian places of worship have been damaged or destroyed by all sides in the country’s eight-year conflict.

The Qatar-based Syrian Network for Human Rights said in its report Monday that the Syrian government was responsible for 60% of the attacks. It said the rest were done by the Islamic State group, the al-Qaida-linked Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and other rebel groups.

In one attack, IS used bulldozers to destroy the ancient Saint Elian Monastery in 2015. Other sites were damaged by combat or shelling.

Christians made up about 10 per cent of Syria’s pre-war population of 23 million. Half the population are now either internally displaced or have left the country.

The Syrian government had no immediate comment on the report.

The Associated Press