Catholic Bishops of the Holy Land denounce new acts of intimidation towards Christian communities

Posted on Jul 30, 2019

Agenzia Fides, Jish (Galilee), 22/7/2019 – The Assembly of Catholic Ordinaries of the Holy Land has denounced the recent acts of intimidation perpetrated against local Christian communities by extremist Jewish groups, considered close to the settler movement.

On the morning of Friday, July 19, 2019, in Jish, in Galilee, unknown assailants damaged cars and wrote slogans in offensive Hebrew against Christians. The previous week, Friday 12 July, participants in a parish party held at the Church of St. James in Beit Hanina, a suburb of East Jerusalem, were hit by the launch of tomatoes and other objects thrown by provocateurs residing at the nearby Jewish settlement of Naveh Yaacov. At least in the first case, the intimidating act is attributable to the groups that in recent years have hit mosques or Christian places (Tabgha, Beit Jamal, Latrun, the Dormition, etc.) in various ways, signing their own violent acts and their profanations with the “Price Tag” formula (the price to pay).

The ordinary Catholic Bishops of the Holy Land issued a statement on Friday 19 July in which, among other things, they express sadness and sorrow for the repetition of criminal acts that are not prosecuted, despite numerous complaints made.

Attacks and profanations against Christian monasteries, churches and cemeteries perpetrated by extremist groups identified with the slogan “Price Tag” began in February 2012. Since then, extremist militants from groups close to the settler movement have also carried out attacks against mosques frequented by the Palestinian Arabs of Islamic religion.

The crimes committed by “Price tag” express the racial hatred of the ultra-nationalist Jewish right, and they often go unpunished. In May 2016, as reported by Agenzia Fides (see Fides, 24/5/2016), the Israeli-based Association of Rabbis for Human Rights also launched a campaign to raise awareness among Israeli political forces about the emergency represented by attacks on Christian and Muslim religious targets by extremist gangs. (GV)