Members of an Armenian Christian family who fled from Raqqa sit in a house in Jazra, a suburb of the northern Syrian city.
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Sawsan Karapetyan and her family lived in fear for years as some of the only Christians in Daesh's (ISIS) Syrian stronghold Raqqa.Under the cover of darkness, the 45-year-old Syrian Armenian and six other family members left Daesh-held territory in the northern city on foot.The anti-Daesh fighters have captured more than half of the city from Daesh since first penetrating it two months ago."When Raqqa was bombed, we'd gather together to pray to the Lord so things would be calm," Karapetyan said, fiddling with her greenish-grey rosary.Along with three female and three male relatives, she fled Raqqa at 3 am Tuesday using an escape route the SMC opened two days ago.Thousands of Armenians and Syriac Christians once lived in Raqqa, making up around 1 percent of the city's population, which is predominantly Sunni Arab.When Daesh seized Raqqa in 2014, most of the city's Christians, as well as its Kurdish population, fled.Tens of thousands of people have been displaced from Raqqa by the escalating fighting.
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