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Christmas without Christians in IS-liberated Mosul

Mosul's second Christmas after its liberation from the Islamic State is a far cry from its past celebrations — the few churches that have been repaired remain empty.
Father John Botros Moshi, the Syriac Catholic Archbishop of Mosul, Kirkuk, and the Kurdistan Region, stands in the rubbles of the Tahra church in Mosul on April 29, 2018. - The church, established during the seventh century, was destroyed by bombings when the regime was fighting jihadists in this area. A French charity called "Brotherhood in Iraq", pledges to rebuild it. (Photo by Zaid AL-OBEIDI / AFP)        (Photo credit should read ZAID AL-OBEIDI/AFP/Getty Images)
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MOSUL, Iraq Christmas remains a sad affair in Mosul, a city that once hosted a lively Christian community, even two years after its liberation from the Islamic State (IS).

This is largely because most of the Christians who fled five years ago have not come back and few churches have been renovated to bring back the Christmas spirit of the past, Samer Elias, a Christian Iraqi researcher and writer, told Al-Monitor. 

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