Statement by Christians from Amongst the People of Palestine
26 October, 2000
We, the under-signed, Christians of the Holy Land, as descendants of the Cananite tribes that inhabited Palestine since times immemorial, as descendants and followers of the first apostles, and as successors of Jerusalem Christians who received the Omar Doctrine from the Great Caliphate Omar Bin Al-Khattab, hereby we state unequivocally, at this key juncture in our history, that we are an integral part of the Palestinian national struggle for independence and sovereignty.

Our quest for liberty, democracy, and respect for pluralism is a common aspiration we share alongside our Moslem compatriots. Palestinian Christians and Moslems agree on many things, especially when it comes to the issue of independence and the return to Jerusalem.

Accordingly, we utterly condemn any Israeli attempt to deal with us as a separate entity of alien presence in Palestine.

In the Jerusalem Post on Wednesday, October 25, 2000, there was an article claiming that the Israeli Foreign Ministry is helping hundreds of Christian families flee Palestinian Authority areas. We caution against believing such falsity. Israel, as a colonialist entity, after having become morally bankrupt and militarily impotent, is now resorting to an old colonialist tactic; to divide and conquer. Our Palestinian unity is much stronger than any such cheap endeavor. It is our duty as Christians to speak up against injustice and to resist it. The New Testament tells us "Do not fear those who kill the body, but cannot kill the soul." (Matthew 10:28). It was since 1948 that Israel up-rooted approximately 450 Palestinian villages, some of them either entirely Christian or with a Christian population, of course not ignoring the fact that it was criminal to up-root Moslems as well.

Throughout the conflict, Israel targeted Christians because they constitute a bridge between the Christian West and the Moslem East. St. John Monastery, near the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the Mosque of Omar, has been confiscated. Armed settlers are desecrating the Monastery. On the out-skirts of Jerusalem, Gilo settlement is built on land confiscated from Beit Jala Christians. The list of atrocities committed against Christians by Israel is endless.

In the mentioned Jerusalem Post article, Shlomo Dror, spokesman for the coordinator of activities in the territories stated that Embassies of England, Canada, and Cyprus "sent cars to pick up [Christian] families from their homes… granting passports to spouses and grandparents and offering financial assistance or air tickets to leave… In many cases the embassies eased restrictions and granted passports."

We have the right to know from the Embassies of England, Canada, and Cyprus: How true are the Israeli claims? We certainly look forward to an explanation. We hope there can be un-ambiguous public statements regarding this matter. As Christian Palestinians and as Arabs, we demand an immediate stop to all Israeli lies and distortions regarding our national unity.


 
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