(AINA) — On February 23 ISIS attacked the 35 Assyrian villages on the Khabur River in the Hassaka province in northeast Syria. Nine Assyrian fighters died defending their villages in the initial attacks and there are reports that ISIS has executed at least 12 Assyrian fighters who were captured, two of them women.Between 262 and 373 Assyrians were captured by ISIS. 23 have been released but the rest remain in captivity. ISIS published a video of one of the captives, a man, purportedly converting to Islam.
In 2006 an Assyrian filmmaker from Armenia, Lina Yakubova, visited the 35 Assyrian villages on the Khabur and made a documentary film about them. Lina Yakubova died in 2011 tragically and unexpectedly at the age of 35 from undiagnosed liver cancer. Her film, titled Ancestral Home, was in three parts, and part two was on the Assyrian villages in Khabur. The entire Assyrian population of these 35 villages, nearly 3,000, has fled. The villages are now abandoned or occupied by ISIS. The Assyrians are not expected to return to these villages. Thus, the Assyrian presence in that area has been eradicated. Lina Yakubova’s documentary is a valuable record of a now destroyed community. http://www.aina.org/news/20150328185530.htm