4 March20-Syria-ENGLISH

Dear prayer partners,

On Sunday 1 March, Turkey shot down two Syrian fighter jets in response to the downing of three Turkish drones by Syrian government forces. Tensions have escalated dramatically after 34 Turkish troops were killed in Syrian government air raids on Idlib on 27 February.

Syrian government forces – supported by Russia – have been trying to retake Idlib from jihadist groups and Turkish-backed rebel factions. Idlib is the last Syrian province where Syrian rebel groups still control significant territory.

Thousands of Syrian civilians continue to flee the fighting in northwest Idlib, heading for the Turkish border, where humanitarian and aid organisations warn of an increasingly dire situation. Turkey demanded help from the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and has opened its borders with Europe (after previously agreeing to contain the flow of refugees), allowing Syrian refugees and other migrants to pass through, in the hope that European nations will be forced to take Turkey’s side in the ongoing conflict in Syria.

According to the UNHCR, Turkey currently hosts about 3.6 million registered Syrian Refugees. The vast majority (about 81%) are women and children.

Please join with us in praying for Syria, for a de-escalation in tensions with Turkey, and that other nations will not make the situation worse.

“The prayer closet is the battlefield of the Church; its citadel; the scene of heroic and unearthly conflicts.” (E.M Bounds)