The Assyrian American National Coalition has mounted an online letter-writing drive to urge the U.S. administration to hold its fire in Syria. Assyrians are an ancient ethnic group indigenous to the Middle East, and belonging mostly to various eastern and orthodox Christian churches.

“Now, as extremist jihadists have moved their war to Syria, an American strike will undoubtedly motivate further attacks on Christians in Syria,” the letter states. “While the use of chemical weapons should not be condoned, the United States must weigh the unintended but utterly predictable negative consequences of further military involvement in Syria on Assyrians and other Christians in the Middle East.”

As of Sept. 11, the AANC said more than 1,300 letters had been transmitted to the White House and members of Congress.