Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Palestinian Christians Suffer & Die Under Palestinian Authority

That is the title of an article printed in the January 16, 2006 issue of The Presbyterian Outlook. According to the author, Justus Reid Weiner, things are going from very, very bad to even worse for Palestinian Christians living in the West Bank and Gaza. The villain, in this case, is not Israel but the Islamist fundamentalists (ie. Hamas) who, by force of terror, have controlled most of the territory for some time. The article is chilling, especially since Hamas is now the controlling majority in the Palestinian Authority.

The article, while relatively short, is too long to reproduce here in it's entirety. You can read the first two paragraphs below but you will then need to click on the link to read the rest.

Palestinian Christians Suffer, Die
in Palestinian Authority Territory
by Justus Reid Weidner
c. 2005 Religion News Service

These are acutely trying times for the Christian remnant residing in areas governed by the Palestinian Authority. Tens of thousands have abandoned their holy sites and ancestral properties to move abroad, while those who remain do so as a beleaguered and dwindling minority Christians, who used to comprise the vast majority of the residents in the Bethlehem area, will fall past a critical point—and their community will no longer be viable.

Palestinian Christian leaders who should be protecting their co-religionists are instead abandoning them to the forces of radical Islam. Muslim religious law (Sharia) is an enormous influence on the inner workings of the Palestinian Authority. Indeed, the Palestinian Constitution states, "the Sharia will be the paramount source of legislation." By granting Islamic law primacy over every other legal source, including international human rights conventions, the minorities living in the Palestinian Authority are denied proper redress via the courts. (Click here to continue reading the whole article)