The statement by Febronia Nabhan, Mother
Superior at Saidnaya Convent, came as Syria's state TV reported
that a suicide attacker set off his explosive vest in an
unspecified government institution in Damascus, killing four and
wounding 17. The TV gave no further details about the blast in
the central Jisr Abyad neighborhood.
Such blasts in Damascus are not uncommon. Some have killed
scores of people in the city.
Nabhan said Tuesday that the nuns and three other women were
taken the day before from another convent in the predominantly
Christian village of Maaloula to the nearby town of Yabroud.
Syrian rebels captured large parts of Maaloula, some 60
kilometers (40 miles) northeast of the capital, on Monday after
three days of fighting.
Nabhan told The Associated Press that the Maaloula convent's
mother superior, Pelagia Sayaf, called her later that day and
said they were all "fine and safe."
The state news agency SANA had reported Monday that six nuns,
including Sayaf, were trapped in a convent in Maaloula.
In September, rebels seized parts of Maaloula only to be driven
out within a few days by government forces.
Maaloula was a major tourist attraction before the conflict
began in March 2011. Some of its residents still speak a version
of Aramaic, a biblical language spoken by Jesus.
Press; ALBERT AJI]
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