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July 23, 2017 11:55 am

World Council of Churches Endorses Palestinian Protests Over Temple Mount Security Measures

avatar by Ben Cohen

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Fr. Robert Smith, Jerusalem representative of the World Council of Churches, addresses a BDS rally in South Africa. Photo: Screenshot.

The World Council of Churches (WCC) has declared its support for the Palestinian campaign against Israeli control of Jerusalem’s holy sites, describing new Israeli security measures at the Temple Mount as a “corrosive act in the midst of an already-fragile peace.”

“Keeping the historical status quo and supporting equal rights for Christians, Muslims and Jews at these holy sites is vitally important to maintaining peace and de-escalating violence,” said Fr. Ioan Sauca, acting general secretary of the WCC.

“Denying access to holy sites for thousands of people who have traveled far to pray is not only a violation of the rights of those individuals, but also a corrosive act in the midst of an already-fragile peace,” Fr. Sauca said.

One prominent Jewish human rights group ridiculed the WCC for protesting against Israel’s installation of metal detectors at the site, when such measures are common at religious sites around the world. In 2015, Saudi Arabia introduced a range of new restrictions, including electronic bracelets, for Muslims performing the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca after capturing a suicide bomber who planned to attack the Grand Mosque in Islam’s holiest city. Major Christian sites, most obviously at the Vatican in Rome, have also implemented enhanced measures amid a continuing wave of Islamist terror attacks in Europe and the Middle East.

“The installation of metal detectors is taken for granted at the Vatican, at government offices, at every airport around the globe,” said Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein – Director of Interfaith Affairs at the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC). “They were first made necessary when Palestinians internationalized terrorism decades ago.”

A statement from the SWC argued: “If the WCC’s call to maintain the ‘status quo’, i.e. free access without metal detectors, is heeded, it will be complicit in the shedding of blood in the future. If the WCC is truly interested in protecting the rights of all the prayers, they should denounce extremist protests and threats made against Istanbul’s leading synagogue, which has suffered two previous terrorist attacks.”

The WCC’s attitude to Israel has been consistently hostile for several decades. The organization has a deliberately vague policy towards the BDS campaign targeting Israel, saying it does not support a boycott, but endorsing at the same time “all non-violent efforts to end the occupation (including considering appropriate economic and other measures).”

The WCC is a central promoter of the Christian “Kairos Palestine” document, which characterizes terrorist acts of “armed resistance” as “Palestinian legal resistance,” denies the Jewish historical connection to Israel in theological terms, calls to mobilize churches worldwide in the call for BDS, and compares Israel with the South African apartheid regime.

According to the Israeli research institute NGO Monitor, the WCC directly funds groups in its “Israel/Palestine” network that promote BDS and “lawfare” campaigns to convict Israeli political and military leaders for alleged “war crimes.”

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  • herbcaen

    World Kouncil of Khichrches

  • Joseph Feld

    Assuming by JC you mean Jesus, and NOT Jewish Chronicle, Jesus visited the Temple a few times and was certainly in Jerusalem at the end of his life. Several very major historic chuches are in Jerusalem. Jerusalem is mentioned in the Bible more than 600 times but not even once in the Qoran. The Crusades in the Middle Ages were attempts by Christians to regain control of the holy sites, including the Temple Mount which was at one time a Cathedral before it eventually became a mosque. Christians and Muslims wanted to control the holy site of Solomon’s Temple.

  • Joseph Feld

    Jordan agred to closed circuit cameras after a previous attack, but the Pals objected — it will identify the terrorists !Metal detectors are used in the Great Mosque at Mecca but the Pals riot over its use in Jerusalem — it will identify the terrorists! Only terrorists benefit from the rejection of routine security measures used around the world. At times the King of Saudi and the King of Jordan have agreed to standard security measures, which the Palestinians reject. When British General Allenby liberated Jerusalem after 400 years of Ottoman Turkish rule in 1917 he said Britain would respect the status quo, e.g. Jews would govern Jewish holy sites, Christians would govern their holy sites and Muslims woud govern theirs. There was no suggestion that security controls should remain how they were in 1917.

  • Sebastien Zorn

    These so-called Christian Organizations don’t even speak out on behalf of Christian victims of Muslim terrorism such as Hannah Bladon, the young English theology student who was just murdered by a knife wielding Palestinian terrorist on the Jerusalem light rail.

  • Sebastien Zorn

    Can’t find any mention of the World Council of Churches condemning the murder of Hannah Bladon, the Christian student who was just murdered on a train by a Palestinian terrorist, either. These dhimmi “Christian” organizations only speak for Jihadists.

  • 1973Sheepdog

    The same attitude is unfortunately prevalent in possibly a majority of Christian mission groups and denominations that should know better. Definitely a strong delusion and a sign of the times.

  • saftalily

    The WCC should know the scorpion has no loyalties.

  • A.S.F.

    They would have stood in solidarity with the Germans and the “National Socialist Party” during “Crystallnacht”, no doubt. A bunch of holy roller idiots.

  • Martyman39

    Christians are being persecuted and massacred in many Muslim countries but only in Israel do they enjoy religious freedom. Did the the thought ever enter their minds about what things would be like if the Muslims were in control of all the holy places in Jerusalem and elsewhere in Israel?

  • mollysdad

    These heretics should stop sitting on the fence. If they like these savages so much, they should convert to Islam.

  • Mike jones

    WCC represents third world churches and their leftist, anti-Zionist supporters. Few mainstream churches in the US are members.

  • Houtex77

    The WCC is a satanic abomination.

  • Mark Kelly

    The WCC is a Theocratical version of the UN. Run by the Muslims, supporting world wide terrorism and destruction. The Catholics have a Muslim operative in the Vatican. Christian Sects have also sold out, preaching that Islam and Christianity are equals. This is similar to the UN claiming that Israel is the World’s most oppressive Government. History shows us that people who accept Islam into their countries get over run by the Muslims….

  • Waldland

    Or Jews or just about anyone who is not a Muslim, tourist, guest worker or slave.

  • Waldland

    I doubt they think that deeply. This council is a reflection of the knee jerk morality of the present without anything close to the depth and breadth of understanding of their reformation or pre reformation predecessors. If they are “siding” with the devil, it is probably out of stupidity.

  • shalicha

    The Arabs are just upset because now they can’t bring their guns and knives. If they were going to pray for peaceful purposes there would be nothing to hide and going through a Metal Detector is no issue. Its to protect themselves too.

  • Waldland

    Let’s end this fiction that Israel is “occupying” the site of it’s OWN Holy Temple. Your argument is offers stealth support to exclusive Muslim control and is therefore self contradictory since it begins with a pseudo support of the Jewish position. This is – NOBODY should be being stabbed at a holy site and the fact that it was Muslims who are doing it consonant with the “new” “stab a Jew for peace” incitement demonstrates precisely why they should have no say in whether metal detects are present of not. Islam is perhaps irredeemably a supremacist religion and may NEVER be able to live in peace with the religions of the rest of the world.

  • Vestina

    Cults do not have accurate doctrine, just error mixed with a little truth.

  • jspicker

    No one is denying anyone access to anything. These people are simply being asked to go through a metal detector, something we all do every time we want to fly anywhere and for other reasons, as well. I cannot think of a single positive reason why they would object to going through a metal detector before entering the Temple Mount area. Only reasons of evil intent come to mind, such as they want to be able to have weapons so they can continue to carry out these attacks. These people are rioting and making all sorts of dramatic statements and trying to leverage this additional security step into a third intifada and the World Council of Churches apparently supports this! I find this support to be revolting and most definitely not representative of our Messiah in this world!

  • José Frajtag

    Let’s take out all the cameras and metal detectors in the Vatican first!!!

    • A.S.F.

      And dismiss the Vatican Papal Guard! That’ll save the Church a few quid that they can give to the poor (or put into their legal defense fund to avoid paying out all those awards past due in all those clergy sex abuse cases pending worldwide.)

    • Mary_Linda

      Or invoke Visitor IDs! Like their American liberal Democrat peers who reject Voter IDs, trying to identify fraud is against humanity they’ll cry.