Enschede Marathon, in honor of Mor Gabriel and the Assyrian Genocide, Seyfo of 1915

The Assyrian Youth Federation (AJF) and the Assyrian Genocide Centre ‘Seyfo Centre’ organized the participation for the Assyrians and gave the opportunity to run for the actual imminent dispossession of the 1600 year old Syriac-Orthodox Mor Gabriel monastery in the South-East of Turkey and the Turkish recognition of the Seyfo (genocide) of 1915.

This year, the Seyfo Center participated for the fourth time in the Enschedese Marathon to announce the genocide among the people. Before the big day started, sponsors were found to raise money for the Mor Gabriel monastery.

The runners and organizers gathered in the Assyrian Mesopotamian Society of Enschede (AMVE) to have breakfast together at 9 ‘o clock. The chairman of AJF, Hadil Mahran, welcomed those present and announced the agenda of the Marathon. Next, the chairman of the Seyfo Center, Sabri Atman, gave a short explanation on the developments concerning the recognition of the Seyfo of 1915 and the imminent dispossession of the Mor Gabriël monastery. Later on, t-shirts including the texts ‘1915 Assyrian Genocide Never Again’ and ‘Hands off Mor Gabriel!’ were handed out to the runners. Around 10 ‘o clock the runners went to the city center to get ready.

Around 11:00 the running began. The nice weather caused more joy for the runners and as well as the public. The runners could make a choice between several cycles, under which a complete marathon (42 km), a half marathon (21 km), 10 km and 5 km. There was also a Kidsrun of 1 km. Major den Oudsten came to shake the Assyrian community a hand and asked what the latest developments were. At 16:30 the Enschedese Marathon came to an end.

During the Enschedese Marathon many pictures were taken, under which several with major den Oudsten and alderman Ed Wallinga. The yearly participation of the Assyrians shows that a lot of effort is getting done to maintain the history in its value and to keep it alive. 

Mari Ailo 

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