Catholic World News

Syrian refugees brought to Rome by Pope tell their stories

April 26, 2016

Two of the refugees whom Pope Francis brought to Rome on his return trip from the Greek island of Lesbos have recounted their stories.

Describing the Pope as “a father to the world,” Ramy Al Shakarji, 51, told the Los Angeles Times that his “two sons were approaching the age for military service and to stop them becoming assassins, for either Assad or ISIS, we had to go.”

Nour Essa said that she and her husband “lived between checkpoints loyal to Assad and the Free Syrian Army and in 2015 we could smell the sulfur from chemical weapon attacks.”

“Muslim governments should be ashamed,” she added. “Instead of helping refugees, they close borders and stop visas for Syrians. If you want to work in Saudi Arabia, you cannot get a visa now.”

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