Assyrians in New Zealand

Assyrian New Zealanders
Total population
1,497 (2013 Census)[1]
Regions with significant populations
Wellington and Auckland
Neo-Aramaic, English
Syriac Christianity
Related ethnic groups
Assyrian Australians

Assyrians in New Zealand are New Zealanders of Assyrian descent or Assyrians who have New Zealand citizenship. The Assyrian community in NZ began in the 1990s when refugees from Iraq and Iran settled in the country.


In 2018, the Assyrian community of New Zealand unveiled a monument at Makara Cemetery in Wellington dedicated to the New Zealanders who fought and died to rescue Assyrians during the Assyrian genocide. [2]

The Holy Cross Primary School in Wellington began teaching about Assyrian New Year as a subject through the Intensive Oral Language Program, where students learn about Assyrian culture, language and heritage. [3]


Majority of Assyrians in New Zealand adhere to churches of the Syriac Christian tradition. These churches include the: Chaldean Catholic Church, Assyrian Church of the East, Ancient Church of the East and the Syriac Orthodox Church.


According to the 2013 Census: [4]

  • 58.1% of Assyrians in New Zealand lived in the Wellington Basin
  • The median age was 33.7 years
  • 22.1 percent were born in New Zealand and 77.7 percent were born overseas.

The statistic of the number of Assyrians in New Zealand may be inaccurate as many Assyrians would identify as Iraqi or Middle Eastern before Assyrian when completing the Census.


  1. ^ "2013 Census ethnic group profiles: Assyrian". Stats NZ. Retrieved 18 June 2019.
  2. ^ Wright, Tony. "Memorial unveiled for 'martyr' Kiwi WWI soldiers who fought against Armenian Genocide". Newshub. Retrieved 18 June 2019.
  3. ^ Yalda, Ashoor. "New Zealand Primary School Adds Assyrian New Year to Curriculum". AINA. Retrieved 18 June 2019.
  4. ^ "2013 Census ethnic group profiles: Assyrian". Stats NZ. Retrieved 18 June 2019.

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