The deportation effort has alarmed lawmakers who have tried to raise awareness about the plight of Chaldean and other Christian communities in Iraq, Syria and elsewhere in the Middle East. Those communities have struggled to survive under the reign of the Islamic State terrorist group. “The support came from a fear in these communities,” said Philippe Nassif, executive director of In Defense of Christians. “These are people that are deeply traumatized. They latched onto his message of ‘We’re going to protect you.’”

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