(AINA) -- A delegation of Assyrian Americans visited Washington on Wednesday to meet with government officials regarding the situation of Assyrians in the Middle East. The meetings were attended by the Assyrian American National Federation, The Assyrian National Council of Illinois, the Iraqi Christian Relief Council and the Assyrian Confederation of Europe.
The delegation met with several offices of Congress as well as the State Department and National Security Council, and called for for the protection of Assyrians and the liberation of the Assyrian province in the Nineveh plain in Northern Iraq.
Related: Timeline of ISIS in Iraq
Related: Attacks on Assyrians in Syria
On June 10, 2014 ISIS captured Mosul, Iraq's second largest city. On August 7, 2014 ISIS drove into the Nineveh Plains north and east of Mosul, causing nearly 200,000 Assyrians to flee their villages.
On February 23, 2015 ISIS attacked the 35 Assyrians villages on the Khabur river in the Hasaka province of Syria. It captured 253 Assyrians and drove 3,000 Assyrians from their homes. ISIS subsequently released most of them upon receiving ransom payments. On August 7, 2015 ISIS captured Al-Qaryatain in Syria, capturing 250 Assyrians; 179 are still being held.
There are nearly 500,000 Assyrians in the Unites States, with large populations in Chicago (90,000), Detroit (100,000), Phoenix, Los Angles, San Diego and San Jose.
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