The Forgotten Syrian Christian Towns Under Attack on Border with Idleb and Northern Hama

In-depth Report:

Two days ago I was in the Syrian Christian town of Al Skeilbiyyeh that has endured sustained attacks from the various terrorist groups backed by the U.S Coalition. These groups are embedded in the countryside bordering Al Skeilbiyyeh. In the last two weeks they have targeted schools, residential areas and civilian districts with 25 rockets/GRAD missiles, causing significant material damage to homes and infrastructure. Children have been told they cannot go to school during these precarious times.

I met with the courageous commander of the volunteer National Defence Forces in this beautiful town, Nabel Alabdalla – and he took me to see the devastation caused by just one rocket that decimated a neighbourhood.

#AlSkeilbiyyeh and the neighbouring town of Mhardeh represent the brave resistance of these besieged peoples against violent and brutal sectarianism and extremism. They are the light in the darkness that has been introduced into their land by the imperialist predators. God bless them and protect them.

Full transcript of Nabel Alabdalla’s words:

“This time, the rockets that landed on this area were unusual and very destructive. We think they have used C4 or another prohibited explosive because this extent of destruction is not from a normal GRAD rocket

This is the result of the Gulf blood money and Erdogan’s policy, his treacherous policy. International mercenaries are targeting civilians in the steadfast city of al-Skeilbiyyeh to drive us from this land.

We send a message to the world that we are staying on this land no matter what they do, we will remain steadfast with the determination of the heroic Syrian Arab army

Our people confirm this because they will stay in their homes neighbouring the international terrorism that is gathered in the countryside of Idleb. We confirm that we always carry the candles of love and peace in one hand and the other hand is on the trigger, we will not leave this land.

Look, there are children toys here, there are homes here, what else is here? Is there a military base here? Where is Europe about this? Why is the Vatican silent? Why is the international community silent and the “humanitarian organisations? Would they accept this landing on their homes?

He worked in Lebanon for 4 years, collecting pennies to build this house, for 4 years. Is he a terrorist? Look at his face, is he a militant? What is he? Why are they targeting him? They are cowards.

They made people homeless

Look, it was not a usual rocket that caused all this destruction

Here the rocket landed. This may collapse, don’t stand on it.

This the level of destruction of one rocket, this is not a usual rocket, look there, it has severed a concrete pillar, scraped the iron bars here, destroyed this house, destroyed that house, it has destroyed two neighborhoods – one rocket.

These are unusual rockets, they have modified them with C4 fillers. The criminals of the world supported by Erdogan, by the American intelligence and by the Gulf blood money want to displace us from this land.

We can assure everyone that we are staying on this land with the determination of the heroic Syrian Arab Army, and the protection of the Virgin Mary. We are not going anywhere, and with the determination of the heroes – our steadfast civilian people – they are showing all levels of steadfastness

We hope for unequivocal support for our civilians to maintain resistance and steadfastness on this Holy Land. We affirm the resistance and we will remain steadfast. We will not move from this land, no matter what they do.

Here we are now, and the launching site is visible. There it is, Tall Othman. There it is … look at the destruction.

International terrorism is gathered in Idleb… we want a solution for this terrorism… it will transfer to Europe, to America and to the world.

They (the terrorists) always send messages of forced displacement, murder – sectarian messages which we have never experienced before.

Here, we are all Syrians. The city of Skeilbiyyeh houses 4000 refugees, Syrians from northern Idleb, the northern villages, from the northwestern countryside of Hama and from the countryside of Idleb.

They came to the city of Skeilbiyyeh fleeing from the criminality of their sons, from the terrorization of their sons, they sought refuge with us, and we embraced them. We provide for them, give them everything they need.

Parents are forced to flee the terrorism of their sons, what should we say about those sons? The mother and father couldn’t endure the terrorization of their sons! Why are the West and Europe supporting them? They are criminals, we must find a solution!

That is the monastery….look where the rocked had landed. Look at the monastery there, the Monastery of the Virgin Mary, the Monastery of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, look where the rocket ( landed), it’s visible, it landed on the wall… there.

They targeted the churches, they targeted the markets, the market was completely destroyed, they targeted the children’s schools, now you will see the footage, they had targeted 4 children schools. What is this?

The city (of Skeilbiyyeh) has been targeted by 4000 rockets and shells until now… this is the protector, look, the photo of saint George is still in its place

The houses were full of children, and this is the patron saint of warriors crowned with victory – Saint George, in his place, steadfast, and we will stay like him

Thank you too…, we always thank the independent journalist who speaks on a humanitarian level, our friend Vanessa Beeley. We convey a message of love and appreciation to you in my name and in the names of the people of Skeilbiyyeh

We will not forget those who stood with us in the most dangerous circumstances and through the darkest times.

Your presence in this land that’s bordering the international terrorism – coming from Paris, from France – strengthens the determination of all the soldiers… and increases the steadfastness of the civilians when they see the humanity in your eyes, and your arrival in the land bordering terrorism.

We thank you in my name and in the name of the city. We confirm our resistance and steadfastness to everyone. We have every confidence that our voice will reach to the whole world, with the terrorism that our city is exposed to, and the terrorism that the civilians are exposed to.

We have complete confidence in you and in your presence in this land and we thank you again for standing with us whenever adversity intensifies.

The late leader Hafez al-Assad said in his clear words: adversities reveal the metal of people, and the more adversity intensifies, the more pure gold is revealed

We always see you with us on this land during dark times, and that is what strengthens us and relieves our people’s suffering, you are always welcome.

Vanessa Beeley, thank you”


Thank you to Nabel Alabdalla and your wonderful family – to the brave soldiers in the NDF, the SAA and to the people of Skeilbiyyeh and Mhardeh who truly teach us the meaning of resistance against the terrorist plague that threatens us all.


Note to readers: please click the share buttons below. Forward this article to your email lists. Crosspost on your blog site, internet forums. etc.

This article was originally published on the author’s Patreon page.

Vanessa Beeley is an independent journalist, peace activist, photographer and associate editor at 21st Century Wire. Vanessa was a finalist for one of the most prestigious journalism awards – the 2017 Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism – whose winners have included the likes of Robert Parry in 2017, Patrick Cockburn, Robert Fisk, Nick Davies and the Bureau for Investigative Journalism team. You can support Vanessa’s journalism through her Patreon Page. She is a frequent contributor to Global Research.

Featured image: One of the volunteer Syrian National Defence Forces soldiers in Al Skeilbiyyeh. (Photo: Vanessa Beeley)

Order Mark Taliano’s Book “Voices from Syria” directly from Global Research.

Mark Taliano combines years of research with on-the-ground observations to present an informed and well-documented analysis that refutes  the mainstream media narratives on Syria. 

Voices from Syria 

ISBN: 978-0-9879389-1-6

Author: Mark Taliano

Year: 2017

Pages: 128 (Expanded edition: 1 new chapter)

List Price: $17.95

Special Price: $9.95 

Click to order

Comment on Global Research Articles on our Facebook page

Become a Member of Global Research

Articles by: Nabel Alabdalla and Vanessa Beeley

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are of sole responsibility of the author(s). The Centre for Research on Globalization will not be responsible for any inaccurate or incorrect statement in this article. The Centre of Research on Globalization grants permission to cross-post Global Research articles on community internet sites as long the source and copyright are acknowledged together with a hyperlink to the original Global Research article. For publication of Global Research articles in print or other forms including commercial internet sites, contact: [email protected] contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of "fair use" in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than "fair use" you must request permission from the copyright owner.

For media inquiries: [email protected]