‘This is an outrageous and totally unnecessary scandal,’ said Eyal Betzer, a local government official. The fire and safety authorities ‘suddenly raised unreasonable and illogical demands that couldn't be met in the short time remaining before the event.’
‘This dismal situation hasn’t drawn any appropriate reaction, locally or internationally, despite appeals, requests, and protests made by the Churches of the Holy Land,’ the Patriarchate’s statement reads.
‘Recently, the attempts of missionary groups, mainly Christians, to solicit conversion of religion have increased,’ the bill’s sponsors complained. Such activities involve ‘many negative repercussions, including psychological damages, [which] warrant the intervention of the legislature.’
A Jewish man’s desecration of a statue of Jesus Christ is just the latest in a ‘growing succession of serious acts of hatred and violence against the Christian community in Israel,’ according to local Catholic authorities.