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By Solomon (Sawa) Solomon



Following the tragic events of 1933 many Assyrians moved to French controlled Syria to settle in the Khabor region and chief among them were upper Tiari and Tkhuma tribes. They were soon followed by other Assyrians so that by the time it was over some 35 villages were established on both banks of the Khabor River between Hasaka and Qamishli. Of these, 25 villages were on the North side and 10 villages on the South side. The length of the Assyrian settlement was about 29 kilometers stretching from Tal Hermiz in the East to Tal Taweel in the West. The width of the area ranged from 2.5 kilometers to 3 on each side of the river. There was a bridge at Tal Tammor and a smaller bridge on Zargan River, a tributary of Khabor near Tal Tammor. The last town was about a distance of 7 kilometers to Tal Taweel. Upper Tiari tribesmen occupied 6 villages (by some accounts 8 villages), while Tkhuma established 11 villages, but the Tiari villages were bigger. Each of the following had 2 villages: Quchanis, Gawar, Baz, Jeelu, Dizen, Sara, and the following lived only in one village: Timar, Lewon, Barwar, Nawchiya, Eiel and Mar Bisho.

The nearest Arabian tribes in the area were Bagar Al Jabal. They lived in the Abdul Aziz mountains in the South of Khabor.Their chiefs were Sheikh Eisa Salman and Raqib Albasheer. To the North of the River lived the Sharabien and the Muamara tribes. The last one was under Sheikh Abdul Aziz Muslib. The main road in the area ran from Hasaka to Qamishli on the North side of the river, while a mountain road serviced the South side. In the Northeast there is a water reservoir and just to the West of it is a farming airstrip.

Tal Tammor is the largest of the settlements, it houses several hundred families. It is the administrative center (Mudeer Nahiya) and it houses Police H.Q.; two more police stations are located in the villages of Abu Tina and Tal Kharita. Tal Tammor was also the home of Malik Yacu of Upper Tiari of Upper Tiari and his brother Malik Daniel, both former Rab Tremmas of the Assyrian Levies. Malik Yacu was to die in Baghdad while on official visit in 1974, while Malik Daniel was to die in Tal Tammor in 1952. Tal Hermiz was home to Malik Lawco of Tkhuma.

He was to die in Chicago in 1977. Umm Keif was the home of Malik Marawgil of Timar. He died there later.In the settlement, there was a church with a priest in every village, and until 1985 the affairs of the Assyrian church of the East were run by the late Mar Awrahim Youkhanna. In February 1985, His Grace, Bishop Mar Aprim Khamis of the United States visited the Khabor Assyrians, and while there he ordained Rev Giwargis Rev Athneiel as Archdeacon and Head of the Church. Mar Aprim also appointed a committee to help the Archdeacon. He also ordained others. A son of Archdeacon Giwargis by the name of Aprim is studying in Chicago to prepare himself to be a future bishop for Khabor. The Diocese of Khabor is part of the Archdiocese of Lebanon and Syria under Metropolitan Mar Narsai Debaz.

Beside the village churches there exists in Qamishli a church under Tev. Youkanna Arkin and in Hasaka there is a church under Rev. Kolo. In 1992 a bishop from the ancient church of the East (Julian Calendar) by the name of Mar Yacoub Daniel arrived in Khabor to run the affairs of that church in Syria. He was formerly a priest in the church of Mar Yousif in Tel Keif. Today Mar Yacoub has the following churches under him: Mar Bithion at Tal Hermiz, Mar Shalita in Umm Ghargan and Mar Aprim in Qamishli.

In each of the Assyrian villages there is a mukhtar who acts as a village chief. I have enclosed their names in the accompanying list. Here I wish to extend my gratitude to Rev. Goliad Attu for identifying church names and their priests; for Hawil Mikhail for help with the names of mukhtars; for Zaya Dankha, Mirza Samano, Hermiz Debaz for general information with-out which I could not have been able to prepare this article.

I would like to add that priest names are from the sixties; mukhtar's names are from the seventies and eighties. The following list contains the names of Khabor villages, their makeup, names of their churches, priests and mukhtars.


Dear Assyrians,

You are welcome to participate in this project by sending me any information, pictures, history, stories or any thing you might have. Also I need your suggestions and corrections if I missed something or misspelled a name of a Village or anything else.

Tel Tawil = Bnai Rumta
Um Waqfe = sad sbedo
Um Al-Keif = Taimornaye
Tel Kepchi = lewanai
Tel Jum'a = Halimnai
Tel Ahmar = Tyarai
Tel Tammar = Tyarai
Tel Shamiram = Marboshnai
Tel Tal'a = Saranai
Tel Nasri
Tel Hiphyan = Quchisnai
Tel Mighas = Gawarnai
Abu tena = jilwai lai
Tel Misas = Barwarnai
Tel Jadiya = Kornai
Tel Goran = Jilwai
Tel Paweda
Tel Damshesh = Quchisnai
Tel Baloa'a = Deznai
Qabr Shamya = Diznai
Tel Najme = Saranai
Jazirah = Iylnai
Tel Baz
Khareete = Ksai                   
Tel Ruman Fowqani
Tel Ruman Tahtani
Tel Meghada
Tel Shama
Tel Wardet
Tel Tal = Talnai
Tel Brej
Tel Sakre
Tel Arabosh
Tel Hurmizd = Tkhuma Gawai
Um gargen
   Ras Al-Ain =     Sapeh =   



This page was last updated on 09/25/15.