No persecution in Palestrine against Christians

October 24th, 1997

Dear friends we want you to stand with the Truth and take a position with us.

As Representative of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem. I have just finished to talk with Jerusalem asking them about that report: "Today The Jerusalem Post published a government report claiming that Palestinian Christians are being persecuted by the PA."

This is absolutly untrue, they said, it a big lie. The LATIN PATRIARCHATE OF JERUSALEM assured me that all is untrue and all is lies.

On the Contrary the Head of Christian Churches, they told me, and all Christians are well respected by the P.A and no such things had happened from our Brothers and sisters the Arab Palestinian Muslims against the Arab Christians in Palestine.

We heard about it on the Israeli news only, they told me, and we were very upset. On the contrary harmony and love and respect are the right words to use to define the good relations between Arab Muslims and Arab Chritians. Please stop all kind of cold war against our Muslim Brothers and sisters.

I ask you to assure all your friends, the Media and everybody that they should not buy lies. Recent history shows also absolutely the contrary of the Jerusalem Post report:

(1) The Arab Muslims did not persecute the Arab Christians, they do belong to same traditons and heritage, some Arab Christian Families has the same family names of the Arab Muslims. Some fanatics (created and financed from outside) had created some time, somewhere, anywhere from Muslims side, (also Christian and Jewish have their own fanatics who created and creating problems here and there) some tension, but this had never been a policy or a stand of our Brothers and sisters the Muslim Arabs against th Arab Christians.

(2) Before 1920 the Arab Muslims and Arab Christians were living on good terms with the Jews of Palestine. Jews were welcomed in the Arab world, and some even moved into the higher economic strata in these societies, at a time when they were being persecuted in Europe. They were received by Egypt, Iraq, Marocco, Algeria, Lebanon, Syria, Palestine and others.

(3) For the past millenium, Jews were never persecuted by Arab Muslims (after the Zionist enterprise, Arab Muslims as Arab Christians found that the Jewish as people are taking their country they started to consider them as ennemies, and started to resisit and defend their fundamental rights on their home Country Palestine). In contrast to Europe, history proves that Jews were treated better in countries ruled by Muslim rulers than in any other countries.

(4) Arab Christians who are a minority in the Middle East and especially in Jerusalem and the Holy Land have never persecuted Muslims or Jews. The Arab Christians of the Middle East and the Holy Land have nothing to do with the stands taken by apocalyptic Christian organizations in the west, such as The Christian Coalition of the Reverand Pat Robertson, in the United States, or with their philosophies with regard to the Middle East conflict or with the Christian Zionists and their International embassy in Jerusalem.The Arab Christians of the Middle East, should not be held accountable for past persecutions of Jews by European or American Christian groups.

(5) We refuse as both Arab Chritians and Arab Muslims the propaganda that wants to prove that there were any studied or willed persecution from our Muslim brothers and Sisters against their Brothers and Sisters the Christians.

We consider it as a mere propaganda against Islam, a cold war against our Muslim Brother that benefits only the Zionists and Israel.

That progaganda should stop because it is absolutely motivated. It could show also that those who are spreading the word about a Muslim persectution against Christians are the people who created that kinds of tensions, if any, between Arab Christians and Arab Muslims in the past to benefit from it.

The Experience of Lebanon is a proof: When Israel invaded Lebanon on 1982, one of the umbrellas was saying that Israel was going to defend the Christian Communties of Lebanon against Islam. Nobody to day beleives that. But at that time the media made a lot of innocent people all over the world beleive that Israel was the Savior of Lebanon.

Please stand with the Truth, the truthful source of information about rhe Christians in the Holy Land are not the Christian-Zionists or the Israelis, the righful source of information is the Arab CHristians of the Holy Land represented by the Arab Churches in Jerusalem.

Thanks.

Fr. Labib Kobti

Representative of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem