Emergency Centre

Syria/Knaye and Yacoubieh


Knaye e Yacoubieh are two villages located in northern Syria, between Aleppo and Latakia and not far from the Turkish border. In 2012 they were occupied by the Islamist forces of Al Nusra which made the life of the small Christian community led by Father Hanna Jallouf more complicated. At the convents Association pro Terra Sancta has set up an emergency centre that deals with the regular distribution of food, medicines and medical expenses, vouchers to buy diesel fuel (for electricity), clothes and hygiene products.

Since November 2019, the clashes in the area have intensified and since then thousands of displaced people have poured into safer areas. To cope with the emergency, Association pro Terra Sancta has increased the operations of the centre by supporting hundreds of displaced people together with local families.


  • Support to the primary needs of the village population


  • Families helped by the emergency centre

Father Hanna’s Courage

Father Hanna says: “Every month we can give our families, around 260, basic necessities such as medicine and milk as well as vouchers to buy diesel for electricity and heating, clothes and school books. We have also organized a service to take children to school. Schools do not provide support for the Koran, Arabic, English and mathematics. We also give our students other study material but without the knowledge of the fundamentalist groups that control the area.


If they knew it would be trouble for us. Our celebrations are tolerated only if carried out inside the church, but it is forbidden to expose to the outside crosses, statues of saints, sacred images, ringing bells”, explains the parish priest, who then reveals: “Two months ago I was convened by the religious court where I was ordered not to dress as a friar anymore as a religious sign indicating the Christian faith. So we put the habit in the suitcase when we have to move and wear it in the areas where it is allowed”. Father Hanna knows that this is the price to be paid by those who have chosen to “remain among our people. We stand firm in faith with our community. Christianity was born here, here are our roots: 500 meters from Knaye, on the road from Apamea to Antioch, St. Paul passed by”.

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