Photos: Der Zor’s Armenian Genocide Memorial Church Liberated by Syrian Armed Forces

Photos Released by Al-Masdar Show Extensive Damage to Memorial Church

DEIR-EZ-ZOR, Syria (A.W.)—Der Zor’s Armenian Genocide Memorial Church (Holy Martyrs), which was severely damaged over the last three years in the Syrian Civil War, has been liberated, according to local reports.

Al-Masdar published photographs of the exterior of the liberated church on Monday (Photo: Al-Masdar)

The Al-Masdar news agency, which has extensively covered the Syrian War on the ground, published photographs of the exterior of the church on Monday.

Al-Masdar published photographs of the exterior of the church on Monday (Photo: Al-Masdar)

Two days earlier, on Nov. 3, the state-run Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) reported that the Syrian Armed Fores liberated the eastern city widely considered the last major ISIS stronghold in Syria.

Al-Masdar published photographs of the exterior of the church on Monday (Photo: Al-Masdar)

“Units of the Syrian Arab Army, in cooperation with the allied and supporting forces, have accomplished the mission of fully liberating Deir ez-Zor city from [the] ISIS terrorist organization,” a military source said on Friday, as cited by the state news agency.

Al-Masdar published photographs of the exterior of the church on Monday (Photo: Al-Masdar)

The Al-Masdar photographs show extensive damage to the church, which was first targeted by ISIS militants on Sept. 21, 2014. Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian issued a statement at the time, condemning the destruction of the church, which housed the remains of victims of the Armenian Genocide, calling it a “horrible barbarity.”

Al-Masdar published photographs of the exterior of the church on Monday (Photo: Al-Masdar)

Nalbandian had called on the international community to cut the Islamic State’s sources of supply, support, and financing, and eradicate what it referred to as a disease that “threatened civilized mankind.”

The church was built in 1989-90, and consecrated a year later. A Genocide memorial and a museum that housed remains of the victims of the genocide was also built on the church compound.

The first photos of the destruction of the Armenian Genocide Memorial Church in Der Zor emerged on Sept. 24, 2014

Thousands of Armenians from Syria and neighboring countries gathered at the memorial every year on April 24 to commemorate the Armenian Genocide.

Armenians commemorating the genocide at the Memorial Church on April 24, 2004. (Photo by Studio Ashnag)

Hundreds of thousands of Armenians perished in Der Zor and the surrounding desert during the Armenian Genocide. In the summer of 1916 alone, more than 200,000 Armenians, mostly women and children, were brutally massacred by Ottoman Turkish gendarmes and armed bands from the region.


  1. Given the close collaboration of ISIS with the Turkish leadership early on, I have absolutely NO doubt that this destruction was done by ISIS criminals, along with their ISIS affiliated fascist Turkish sympathizers, under the order of the genocidal Turkish government. This Church also carried a symbol and was a reminder of the Armenian Genocide right next door to fascist Turkey, the very perpetrator of the Armenian Genocide, and that alone was an enough cause of concern to Turkish genocide deniers to take advantage of the opportunity and wartime chaos to have it demolished…. I believe this attack occurred around the time when 49 Turkish hostages taken by ISIS in Mosul were released without a scratch. The hostage release and the Armenian Church destruction were a form of payback to the criminal Turkish leadership by ISIS for both military and financial support, through buying illegal Iraqi oil from ISIS, as well as allowing them free passage into Syria through the Turkish-Syrian border….

    • I can’t state it as fact but it was reported that
      al-nusra (Turk supported terrorists) were responsible for the bombing of our Church.
      Isis never claimed responsibility for it.
      Al-nusra was also (reportedly) responsible for attacking Christian towns and in one case the Turkish military provided artillery support.
      I believe the attack on that Church was ordered from the highest level of the Turkish Govt.
      Whoever ordered the attack needs to be discovered and their name(s) added to
      a “special list” for future justice.

  2. What about the collaboration of USA government and Israel with ISIS? Why you do not mention it? Are you afraid of the Zionists?

  3. Please read this article in Newsweek magazine:


    Not just Turkey but also the US, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar have supported ISIS.

    But please also notice that American Jews are 99% in favor of Azerbaijan, and they are using their power in the US to praise Azerbaijan and condemn Armenia. Article after article. You have noticed, have you not?

    Yet few Armenian American organizations will say anything about that. They just let Jewish Americans get away with it without pointing out that it’s a hate campaign against Armenia.

    We don’t have a hate campaign against Israel, but the Jewish American establishment has a hate campaign against Armenia. Does that strike you as fair?

    Folks, please, we have to stop being afraid of offending the Jewish lobby.
    Let’s get this subject out in the open.
    We have freedom of speech in America. What, we’re not supposed to use it? Are we Armenians or mice?

  4. What we are seeing in Syria (as well as in Libya, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan, etc) is American tax dollars at work. ISIS is a joint American-Israeli-Saudi Arabian venture and it’s meant to rollback Iranian advances in the Middle East.

  5. Iran knows very well who is supporting ISIS and for what reason. That’s why they are fighting ISIS in Iraq and Syria to stop that cancer from reaching their country.

  6. And the BIG lesson, few Armenians want to learn is right in front of your eyes: this is liberated by FORCE by brave soldiers with who care where their weapons were made.
    just like Artsakh was.
    Not by some legal document saying this is mine ,not even by a lightening strike from god in the skies saying this is my house of worship. by a liberating army.

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