The Islamic State has damaged more than12,000 homes belonging to Christian families in just one region of Iraq and destroyed a further 700.

The figures come from Aid To The Church In Need (ACN), the Catholic charity that responds to persecution of believers around the world.

ACN says the cost of repairing and replacing the homes will be around $200 million.

The specific area the report applies to is the Nineveh Plain, an area of northern Iraq close to the city of Mosul, where the ancient city of Nineveh is located.

The report says there are now 14,000 families – around 90,000 people – who are IDPs, or internally displaced people. They are living in the Erbil area, having been forced to flee the Mosul area by the arrival of Islamic State.

These people are being cared for by charities and churches supported by ACN. A less-well reported aspect of the impact of IS is the impact it has made on Christians’ personal possessions and well as their properties and land. ‘More than 25 percent [of those surveyed] also reported that their vital documents had been stolen by ISIS,’ said ACN.

Erbil is in Kurdistan and is a relatively safe haven for Christians and other minorities, while in Mosul itself the battle for control between the Iraqi army and Islamic State rages on.

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