Israel restricts Christian clergy travel

New decision caused by security concerns; priest says rule violates Israel-Vatican understandings.

By
October 26, 2007 21:24
1 minute read.
st peters sq vatican 298

vatican 224. (photo credit: AP [file])

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Israel has rescinded some travel privileges for Arab Christian clergy traveling to and around the West Bank because of security concerns, an Israeli spokeswoman said Friday. The decision means the religious leaders' visas will be good for one entry only, and not for repeat visits as in the past, Interior Ministry spokeswoman Sabine Haddad said. This means they will be required to coordinate each trip they make, she said. "According to a request by security officials, we restricted the visas of the clergy," Haddad said. "We are trying to find a solution to make it easier for them." Israel and the Palestinian territories are home to a small Christian minority, with members of the religion comprising less than two percent of the Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. It was not immediately clear how many Christian leaders would be affected by the change. Israel has in the past tried to maintain warm ties with Christians, often easing restrictions to allow pilgrims entry into the West Bank town of Bethlehem for the Christmas holiday. Father Jack Abed, a parish priest of the Melkite Catholic community near the West Bank town of Ramallah, said the new rule violated understandings between Israel and the Vatican. "One of the agreements is the freedom of movement and worship," he said. "There is no freedom of movement if Israel wants to limit visas to a single entry"

Related Content

Jisr az-Zarq
April 3, 2014
Residents of Jisr az-Zarqa beckon Israel Trail hikers to enjoy their town

By SHARON UDASIN