City of David
City of David Kobi Finkler

The Council of Sages and Preachers in Al-Quds (the Arab name of Jerusalem -ed.) made clear on Tuesday that the transfer of real estate in Jerusalem to non-Muslims is considered one of the gravest crimes in terms of religion and nationality.

In a statement, the Council said it is forbidden to remain silent in light of certain people's attempts to justify the transfer of the assets of the Jodeh family to Jewish ownership.

The senior Muslim clerics stressed that a 1935 fatwa issued by the clerics of Palestine and which prohibits the sale of land to Jews remains in effect.

They also called upon the Palestinian Arab public to take all possible measures to prevent the sale of real estate assets in Jerusalem, even to local Muslims or ones from abroad, for fear that the sale would be used to transfer ownership to Jews.

Under PA law, selling of land to Jews is illegal and punishable by death. However, such sentences must be approved by the PA chairman, and current chairman Mahmoud Abbas has preferred to authorize life sentences for such offenses, possibly due to fear of an international backlash.

In 2014, Abbas toughened the PA law against selling property to Israeli Jews, so that any Palestinian Arabs involved in renting, selling or facilitating real estate transactions with citizens of "hostile countries" in any way would receive life imprisonment and hard-labor.

The “National Popular Council of Al-Quds” recently condemned the sale of residential buildings in the Old City of Jerusalem to "Jewish settlers and their settlement associations."

It also described the sale of real estate to "Jews" as "a despicable crime against Al-Quds, Palestine and the homeland."

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