NORTH AND EAST SYRIA — The Naoum Faiq House of Culture and Art in Zalin (Qamishli) and the Syriac Cultural Association in Qabre Hewore (Al-Qahtaniyah) held an event commemorating the 91st anniversary of the death of Syriac writer and researcher Naoum Faiq.
During the evening, Syriac Cultural Association member Hana Hanna delivered a speech on the life and work of Faiq. Hanna’s speech was followed by the performance of Syriac national songs.
Hanna Soumi, an official of the Syriac Cultural Association in Zalin, explained that Naoum Faiq was able to give “a great dimension to the national issue” and that his interests prompted the Ottoman authorities to pursue him, forcing him to leave the country for the United States where he settled as a refugee.
“Naoum Faiq was able to establish a national nucleus — historical, literary, and political ideas — from which all Syriac and Assyrian political parties are drawn,” Hanna said.
Faiq was born in 1868 in the city of Diyarbakir in modern day Turkey. He worked as a journalist and writer. His writings on Syriac nationalism were instrumental in the founding of the Syriac–Assyrian nationalist movement.
He founded the newspaper Planet of the East, published in Syriac and Arabic, which is considered one of the most important Syriac national newspapers in Turkey before the Sayfo Genocide of 1915.
After fleeing Ottoman Turkey, Faiq established the newspaper Mesopotamia in the U.S. Faiq passed away in the U.S. on 5 February 1930.