Head of the Greek Orthodox Church in Jerusalem Archbishop Atallah Hanna announced on Friday that Christians must not stay silent regarding the Israeli occupation’s crimes against Palestinians, Al-Quds Al-Arabi reported.
The archbishop’s remarks came during a meeting with a delegation from the Palestinian orthodox Christians in Israel to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.
According to the newspaper, the delegation toured Jerusalem and Bethlehem, listening to Hanna speak on the importance of historical Christian sites in the Old City of Jerusalem.
“We have always been beside the oppressed and preachers of peace, love, fraternity and humanity,” Hanna expressed. “We reject all forms of hatred and racism… and take the side of the just issues, freedom and human dignity.”
Hanna reiterated that Palestinians have been subjected to “oppression and repeated catastrophes”, stressing that Palestinians have the right to freedom.
“Therefore,” he urged, “we, as Christians, cannot stay neutral as some want us to be. When we see oppressed or persecuted people, we have to stand beside them.”
Meanwhile, he added that Palestinians have been sacrificing everything for the sake of freedom. “We, as Palestinian Christians, cannot stay silent towards the Israeli occupation’s oppression,” he said.
“We are part and parcel of the components of this nation and its cause,” he shared, affirming that the Palestinian cause: “Is our cause, our pain and our suffering… The Palestinian dream of freedom is also our own dream.”
According to Hanna, the birthplace of Jesus Christ “longs for justice and peace” and called for praying for the sake of achieving: “The real peace, not surrender and acceptance of aggression, persecution and authoritarianism.”
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