Syrian Aramaic, Turoyo in Iraq

Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

Turoyo Syrian Aramaic people take pride in their long Christian history. Their Bible, the Peshitta, dates back thousands of years. Those who speak Turoyo Syrian Aramaic live in many countries, though their language began in Tur 'Abdin, which is now in southeastern Turkey.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Those who speak Turoyo Syrian Aramaic usually speak the local trade language as well. They sometimes blend their language with the local language. Only about one in 20 of them can read the Bible in their Turoyo Syrian Aramaic language since that language has changed drastically since its origin over 1,000 years ago.

In secularized countries in Europe and North America, the Turoyo people blend in with the general population. In the Muslim countries, namely Turkey and Syria, they are sometimes persecuted for not being Muslims.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Turoyo Syrian Aramaic people are Christian, but they struggle to understand their doctrine, given the linguistic complications they face. Fortunately, these are being addressed.

What Are Their Needs?

Although they revere God's word, they don’t understand the Peshitta (their Bible) because the language has changed greatly. The Old Testament was translated from Hebrew in the second century and the New Testament from the Greek in the fifth. Christians appreciate what Scripture is, but they have minimal knowledge of what it says for their daily lives. There are audio gospel materials available for them. Many have seen the JESUS Film, also produced in their language. Clergy members are eager for their mother-tongue Old Testament. They already welcomed and began to implement the recently completed New Testament into their religious life. Christians now want their culture reclaimed for Christ.

Prayer Points

Pray for the Turoyo Syrian Aramaic to soon have all they need to understand God’s word.

Pray for the Holy Spirit to continually give them spiritual hunger for truth and righteousness.

Pray for Turoyo Syrian Aramaic disciples to make more disciples.

Scripture Prayers for the Syrian Aramaic, Turoyo in Iraq.

Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Syrian Aramaic, Turoyo
People Name in Country Syrian Aramaic, Turoyo
Alternate Names
Population this Country 5,400
Population all Countries 180,000
Total Countries 9
Indigenous No
Progress Scale 3
Unreached No
Frontier People Group No
Pioneer Workers Needed
People ID 19615
ROP3 Code 110313
ROP25 Code 308383
ROP25 Name Syrian Aramaic (Turoyo)
Country Iraq
Region Africa, North and Middle East
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 16  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Country Iraq
Region Africa, North and Middle East
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 16  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Primary Religion: Christianity
Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.60 %)
98.00 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
2.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Primary Language Turoyo (5,400 speakers)
Language Code tru   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Turoyo (5,400 speakers)
Language Code tru   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Turoyo

Primary Language:  Turoyo

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1983)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1992-2013)
Bible-Complete No
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching Global Recordings Network
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Turoyo Jesus Film Project
General Scripture Earth Gospel resources links Scripture Earth
Photo Source Sylvia beth Yakub - Flickr  Creative Commons 
Map Source Anonymous  
Profile Source Joshua Project 
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Learn more.

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