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A group of Palestinians attacked a Christian holy site in the West Bank over the weekend, causing extensive damage, according to media reports.
Palestinians from the Balata refugee camp in the city of Shechem were armed with guns, firebombs and stones during the Sunday night attack on Jacob’s Well near Nablus, sources told the Tazpit Press Service, an Israeli news agency.
“Nablus is controlled by the Palestinian Authority, which fails to help the Christian community and stop the disturbing pattern of violence against them,” Elias Zarina told the TPS.
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Orthodox priests walk outside the Nativity Church, where Christians believe Jesus Christ was born on the eve of Orthodox Christmas, in Bethlehem, West Bank. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)
Zarina is the co-founder and community manager of the Jerusalemite Initiative, a Jerusalem-based nonprofit, which encourages Arab Christian integration into Israeli society.
The monastery’s keeper, 80-year-old Father Ioustinos of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate was not hurt, but was traumatized by the violence, the news agency reported.
Local leaders said attacks by Palestinians on Christian sites have become commonplace.
“It’s not something special in particular, there are many instances like this everywhere these days, unfortunately, even in Jerusalem,” Dr. Naim Khoury, founder of the first Baptist Church in Bethlehem, told TPS. “The whole situation is very unstable and people are frustrated with the situation. People should pay attention and see what’s happening. We know very well that no Christian would abuse a mosque.”
Nuns visit the Grotto of the Nativity Church, where Christians believe Jesus Christ was born on the eve of Orthodox Christmas, in Bethlehem, West Bank. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)
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The site that was attacked Sunday night was purchased by Biblical Patriarch Jacob based on the New Testament, according to Christian beliefs, TPS said.
In 1908, work began on a small Christian compound, which included a church and monastery. Construction was only completed in the 1990s due to financial reasons and other factors.
The alleged attack came as Israel and Hamas continue to battle in the Gaza Strip following the terror group’s Oct. 7 attack on Israeli communities.
Louis Casiano is a reporter for Fox News Digital. Story tips can be sent to [email protected].