Daily Israel Report

Church´s Spokesman Visits Families of Suicide Bombers

Atallah Hana, spokesman for Metropolitan Irineos, the head of the Greek Orthodox Church in Israel, paid an Easter Sunday solidarity visit to families of Arab suicide bombers, offering words of comfort and support.
First Publish: 5/13/2003, 7:58 PM

Atallah Hana, spokesman for Metropolitan Irineos, the head of the Greek Orthodox Church in Israel, paid an Easter Sunday solidarity visit to families of Arab suicide bombers, offering words of comfort and support.

Arutz-7's Shimon Cohen reports that within the framework of the Church's festivities in honor of their Easter holiday, Greek Orthodox Patriarch Irineos' spokesman Atallah Hana embarked on a visit to Beit Lechem and Ramallah where he visited the families of Arab terrorists currently held in Israeli prisons and even the homes of suicide bombers. Atallah arranged the trip in order to show support for the families of the prisoners and strengthen the spirits of the terrorists' children. This sentiment of solidarity was expressed in the spokesman's words throughout the day.

While in Beit Lechem, Hana participated in an opening ceremony of an art exhibition in the local university entitled "A Year After the Siege of Bethlehem." The exhibit portrayed Arab terrorists, who had evaded the IDF by holing themselves up in Beit Lechem's Church of the Nativity last year, as putting up a noble struggle against "the Occupational Forces' Siege."

In his comments at the opening ceremony, Hana expressed his support for the struggle of the Palestinian Authority against Israel. He strongly praised the increased power and strong spirit of the "Palestinian freedom fighters struggling against the Israeli occupation."

Acting Greek Orthodox Patriarch Irineos has distanced himself from Hana in the past - particularly in order to garner the necessary approval from the Israeli government for his appointment as church leader despite his close friendship with Yassir Arafat. However, Hana appeared once again as his spokesman at the main Easter holiday ceremony, sitting to Irineos' right and translating the church leader's words from Greek to Arabic.