By: FA ME
Iraqi Christians are digging a moat around one of their biggest towns in northern Iraq to guard it against car and suicide bombings.
The moat will ring the town of Hamdaniya a few kilometers east of the northern Iraqi city of Mosul.
Hamdaniya, locally known as Qarqoush, is a predominantly Christian town and a haven for hundreds of Christian families forced to leave Mosul.
It is one the largest Christian towns among the string of Christian settlements to the east and west of Mosul.
It is situated in a fertile plateau and surrounded by Arab villages.
Officials in Hamdaniya say they lack the resources to control scores of country roads leading to the town.
The town is currently under Kurdish militia control and Iraqi observers say Sunni Arab insurgents will continue targeting it so long as it remains under Kurdish control.
The Kurds want to officially add Hamdaniya to their self-rule areas but officials of Nineveh Province of which Mosul is the capital have said they cannot accept Kurdish presence in the town.
It is not clear when the moat will be completed and who will be financing the dig.