Muslims help restore church in Mosul after it was devastated in battle with ISIS

Muslims and Christians cleaned the Mar Georges monastery at al-Arabi in Mosul this week.Facebook/This is Christian Iraq/Mohammed Al-Zakaria

Muslim neighbours helped to restore a church in Mosul which was left ruined after Kurdish and allied forces pushed Islamic State out of the Iraqi district.

One of the occupied areas was al-Arabi in Mosul, where the Mar Georges monastery is located and during the IS occupation the Chaldean church was shot at by terrorists.

But rebuilding began this week after Muslims in the community were accused of harassing a Christian family, a rumour that was denied by the Muslims.

They said they wanted to show that 'Mosul is yours as it's ours' and 'our differences are our strength'.

Photos on the This Is Christian Iraq website show how Muslim neighbours rushed to the church to clean the space and repair the holy rooms.

Locals help with the reconstruction effort at the church.Facebook/This is Christian Iraq/Mohammed Al-Zakaria

Mosul is set to be liberated by the end of next month, after years of Islamist domination.

Iraqi Christians were driven from their homes by the ISIS advance in the summer of 2014, when some 80,000 Christian refugees fled Mosul and the Nineveh Plain under threat of forced conversion or execution.

The 2,000-year-old Christian population of Iraq shrunk from 1.4 million to around 250,000 in the aftermath of the 2003 Iraq war, with many of those who are left now living in disused steel containers or hiding out in churches.

Some experts have predicted that Iraqi Christians may never return to Mosul.