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Photo Essay: Palestinian Christians and Muslims protest new Israeli tax aimed at Christian properties

Israel/Palestine
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The Church of the Holy Sepulchre closed its doors Sunday due to a new Israeli property law and tax policy that would allow the government to take over church properties leased to private companies, and begin imposing taxes on church properties. Christian leaders protested the move saying, “This reminds us all of laws of a similar nature which were enacted against the Jews during dark periods in Europe.”

On Tuesday evening, as crowds of tourists and Christians gathered to pray outside of the church, local Palestinian Christians and Muslims marched together from the Christian quarter of the Old City to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre to protest the new policies.

The tax plan and proposed property legislation was suspended later Tuesday evening. An Israeli committee will negotiate with church representatives to resolve the plans to tax church-owned commercial property within Jerusalem, according to Netanyahu’s office. “This is a victory. We’re celebrating,” Adeeb Joudeh, the custodian of the keys of the church, told Al Jazeera.

Palestinian Christians and Muslims marched together to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in protest to a new Israeli tax policy and a proposed property law which caused Christian leaders to shut the doors of the church Sunday. (Photo: Seth Herald)

Local christians and tourists alike gathered at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre Tuesday evening to pray in front of its closed doors. (Photo: Seth Herald)

Christians pray at the doors of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre Tuesday evening. (Photo: Seth Herald)

Greek Othodox Priests look on as crowds gathered to pray outside of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre Tuesday evening. Christain leaders shut the doors of the church Sunday in protest to new Israeli tax policy and a proposed property law. (Photo: Seth Herald)

A tourist prays at the outside wall of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre Tuesday evening. (Photo: Seth Herald)

Palestinan Christians hold up a cross and the key to Church of the Holy Sepulchre Tuesday evening in protest to the new Israeli tax-policey and proposed property law. (Photo: Seth Herald)

About Seth Herald

Seth Herald is an American documentary photographer raised in Southern Indiana and is now based in Jerusalem.

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5 Responses

  1. Citizen
    February 28, 2018, 2:55 pm

    Vatican & Greek Orthodox Money, not protection of Palestinian Christians, was at the root of Holy Sepulcher protest https://www.jonathan-cook.net/2018-02-28/palestinian-christians-holy-sepulchre-protest/

    Evangelical Christians side with Israel on this issue, of course.

    They would never do this for the right reason: in support of local Palestinians.

    • JosephA
      March 1, 2018, 12:04 am

      Thank you for sharing the link to such a well-reasoned and informative article.

      • Citizen
        March 1, 2018, 10:16 am

        Happy to share

  2. Kay24
    February 28, 2018, 8:28 pm

    If the Christian zionists in the US had any intelligence, they can see that the zionists are vicious, and making Christian Palestinians suffer too. “God’s chosen” behaving like vindictive devils again.

  3. Marnie
    March 1, 2018, 6:58 am

    “Christian leaders protested the move saying, “This reminds us all of laws of a similar nature which were enacted against the Jews during dark periods in Europe.”

    The ‘dark periods’ of history are the only periods the zionist state is interested in preserving. Funny that. Maybe it’s time to close Yad Vashem out of embarassment as so many antisemites are zionists and live in the imaginary ‘state’ of israel.

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