The State of Palestine warned today against Israel’s continued aggression against Christian and Muslim holy sites and worshipers in occupied Jerusalem.
“The State of Palestine rejects, in the strongest terms, Israel’s illegitimate decision to impose additional punitive restrictions on the entry of Christian pilgrims and worshipers to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher during the sacred service of Orthodox Easter,” read a statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates.
The statement added, “The State of Palestine holds Israel, the occupying Power, fully responsible for its aggression and extreme provocations, which will have far-reaching consequences for regional and international peace and security.”
“To be clear, Israel, the occupying Power, is not committed, as it falsely claims, to either bring about calm in Jerusalem or to guarantee the freedom of religion and worship for all. It continues to violate its obligations by failing to bring to an end its illegal occupation and the religious and racial discrimination inherent in the law and practice of its apartheid regime.”
The statement continued, “Over the past weeks, the world has borne witness to Israel’s militarization of Christian and Muslim religious ceremonies, the imposition of discriminatory and punitive measures, and the brutal violence inflicted against Palestinian worshipers, all while protecting and escorting Jewish in their provocative raids.”
The State of Palestine said Israel “is violating the Status Quo, upending centuries of Christian heritage and Palestinian traditions. The occupying Power is willfully provoking Christian and Muslim worshipers and threatening a religious war.”
In this connection, the State of Palestine lauded the decision of the Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem to reject Israeli manipulations of the Status Quo “and calls on the international community to urgently provide protection for Christian pilgrims and Palestinian worshipers.”
“The State of Palestine also calls on the international community to urgently act, collectively and individually, to implement the relevant United Nations resolutions and uphold the legal and historic character and special status of Jerusalem.”