The Islamic Christian Commission for the Support of Jerusalem and Holy Sites has warned of a draft law for a project which allows the Israeli occupation government to confiscate land sold by the Orthodox Church to private investors.
According to Al Ray Palestinian Media Agency, the organization stressed, in a statement on Tuesday, its rejection of the imposition of taxes on the churches of Jerusalem and the destruction of their property, which runs contrary to the historical position of the churches in the Holy City over centuries..
The Armenian and Orthodox churches of the Holy Land were called upon to stop the draft law, which aims to confiscate their land, four months after a major crisis led to the closure of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher.
The Secretary-General of the Commission, Hanna Issa, stressed the need to oblige the Israeli occupation to abide by the historical situation of the Holy City, based on the Ottoman and the Jordanian guardianship of the Islamic and Christian sanctuaries in Jerusalem.
He stressed that imposing taxes on churches and confiscating their lands, undermines the sacred character of the occupied city, and hinders the churches from performing their role and activities.
The Christian Islamic Organization pointed out that the churches’ commitment to the historical situation of the city of Jerusalem and the rejection of any change to its reality, which is to preserve the historical heritage of the occupied city and to fight systematic methods of Judaization practiced by the occupation against the city and its Islamic and Christian sanctuaries, stressing the Arab nature of Jerusalem culture.
Chris Carlson is a student of religion at Mount Mercy University, United States, and has been a regular volunteer with the IMEMC since 2013. He assisted in providing extensive coverage of the 2014 Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip and continues, into the present day, with the issues at hand. He can be reached via email at c h r i s @ i m e m c . o r g.