Stephen Rasche: The Christian population in Iraq is at a tipping point. The displaced Christians from Nineveh have survived for three years almost exclusively on the back of private, mostly faith-based aid, but the ability of these donors to carry this load is coming to an end. Likewise, the ability of the people to further endure in their current situations is at an end. What the established aid community will do to ensure their survival in the next two months will likely be determinative for the continued presence in the region of these displaced people. Overall, there remains a remnant population of approximately 5,000 families in Baghdad, two existing viable hubs in the northern Kurdistan Region, and one potential hub in the Southern Nineveh Plain. Of the two in the north, Ankawa, the historic Christian enclave of Erbil, is home to what is at present the last fully operating, economically viable Christian community in Iraq. Alqosh, which barely avoided ISIS takeover in 2014, remains a viable center from which to redevelop the Christian areas of the Northern Nineveh Plain, provided it receives stabilization and reconstruction help now.
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