Join me today in praying for civilian victims of the Syrian regime’s newest offensive in the south of the country. My name is Fouad Abou-Rizk and I am a Catholic who is passionate about international crisis relief. I write humanitarian prayers to be an advocate and help people care.
I pray for a peaceful end to war in Syria. I pray that the war’s conclusion will leave the country with new leadership for a strong and fair government.
I pray for your mercy for the estimated 160,000 people who have fled from their homes within the past two weeks in the regime’s newest offensive in the south of the country. I pray that all who have fled their homes will find shelter and that they will have what they need to get by. I pray that they will be treated with mercy and compassion and that wherever they go, they will be met by people with resources to help them.
I pray that civilian homes and medical centers will not continue to be targeted and bombed or attacked. I pray that you will put love and peace into the minds and hearts of all who wage war.
I pray that if the situation continues to escalate, that Jordan will open its border to more refugees. I pray that Jordan will receive the funding they need from the international community to support the large numbers of refugees they host. I also pray that Israel will open its border to refugees in the occupied Golan Heights.
I pray that international powers will not continue to be indifferent to the violations of the regime into this area which is supposed to be a de-escalation zone, condemning their actions with words, but ultimately doing nothing more.
I pray that the 96+ people who have been killed will be welcomed into Heaven for the sake of the suffering they endured at the end of their lives. I pray that the injured will heal fully and quickly and that those traumatized by war will encounter the peace of Christ.
Notes and Explanations
On June 19th, the Syrian military began an offensive into the southern part of the country, a province called Deraa, which has been under rebel control. The military has destroyed numerous civilian homes, medical centers, and hospitals, killing at least 96. This province was supposed to be part of a de-escalation (essentially meaning ceasefire) zone agreed upon by Russia (a close ally of the Syrian regime), the U.S., and Jordan (which borders Deraa).
Though the Syrian regime’s army (with Russian air support) has been attacking cities under rebel control in this part of the country for nearly two weeks, international powers have done nothing of substance to stop them. The United Nations has demanded that all warring parties cease fighting.
As of Friday, the United Nations raised its number of estimated people displaced in Deraa from 50,000 to 160,000. Jordan, which neighbors Deraa has said that it does not have the capacity to take in any more refugees.
Jordan’s foreign minister stated that the country already hosts 1.3 million Syria refugees and has not received enough foreign assistance to support them. Though six months of 2018 have already passed, the United Nations High Commission on Refugees has only received 19% of the annual funding that they needed to support refugees.
The Golan Heights is a territory occupied by Israel (and it’s military) and separates the country from Syria. The Golan Heights borders the Deraa province. Israel does not host a population of Syrian refugees and has said that it will not accept potential refugees coming from the current crisis near their border. Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey also border Syria, with each hosting over one million Syrian refugees.