'Churches may not sell land to Jews or Zionists'

Churches which sell land to Jews are 'harming stability' and 'betraying the Palestinian nation,' Christian Arab priest says.

Dalit Halevi,

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Islamic Christian Council member and former Gaza Latin Church head Manuel Musallam blamed churches in Judea and Samaria for helping the "Israeli occupation."

In an interview with Hamas newspaper Palestin, Musallem said that there is a large number of unsupervised churches in the Palestinian Authority, and that there is no information on why they were founded.

Before the establishment of the State of Israel, European countries and the Greek and Russian Orthodox churches, as well as other Christian denominations, purchased land in many parts of the country.

After Arutz Sheva exposed a deal in which the Greek Orthodox Church signed 140 year leases basically selling large portions of its land in the Jerusalem neighborhoods of Talbieh and Rehavia to the "Nayot" company owned by the Ben David family, Musallam said that selling even one grain of the Church's dirt given to the "Israeli occupation" is "a severe betrayal of the Palestinian nation and of all the Christians in Palestine."

"Every grain of Palestine's sand is worth the entire world," Musallam said, adding that Israel is "the enemy of the Palestinian nation" and warning that "selling Church lands endangers the stability and harms the good name of Palestine's Christians and their connection to their homeland."

Musallam also said that no church had the right - even if it legally owns the land - to sell land to any Jewish or Zionist entity. If a church does not need its land, he explained, it can transfer the land to the Palestinian Authority, to be used for a hospital or residential buildings.

The Palestinian Authority sentences any Muslim who sells land to Israelis to the death penalty.


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