A Christian organization — the European Coalition for Israel — “blasted international Christian institutions for blaming Israel for the recent Temple Mount tensions.” In a statement issued by the World Council of Churches:
Secretary-General Olav Fykse Tveit called upon the Israeli government to immediately remove the metal detectors, thereby putting the blame for the latest wave of violence on Israeli security measures and not on the Palestinian incitement to violence.
A Jewish human rights group — the Simon Wiesenthal Center — condemned the WCC, stating (as Hugh Fitzgerald details here) that the installation of metal detectors is routine at religious sites globally:
In 2015, Saudi Arabia introduced a range of new restrictions, including electronic bracelets, for Muslims performing the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca after capturing a suicide bomber who planned to attack the Grand Mosque in Islam’s holiest city. Major Christian sites, most obviously at the Vatican in Rome, have also implemented enhanced measures amid a continuing wave of Islamist terror attacks in Europe and the Middle East.
The World Council of Churches has a reputation for condemning Israel and enabling the Palestinian jihad. A few years ago, the WCC demanded that Israel release jihad terrorists, and has dedicated events to ending the so-called “illegal occupation.”
A Christian organization promoting Israeli-European cooperation blasted international Christian institutions for blaming Israel for the recent Temple Mount tensions.
“It is simply wrong to blame the Israeli government for wanting to protect those entering the Temple Mount after the recent killings,” European Coalition for Israel Founding Director Tomas Sandell said Monday night. “Metal detectors are today a part of standard security procedures at holy sites in the world, from the Vatican to Mecca. These measures are put in place simply in order to protect people and are not meant to deny anyone access.”
Sandell’s remarks came in wake of various statements from Christian institutions around the world, including the Vatican and the World Council of Churches in Geneva, pleading for calm and asking Israel to stop inciting to violence.
In a statement from WCC on Friday, Secretary-General Olav Fykse Tveit called upon the Israeli government to immediately remove the metal detectors, thereby putting the blame for the latest wave of violence on Israeli security measures and not on the Palestinian incitement to violence.
The Geneva-based organization, which is said to represent millions of Protestant Christians, has a long history of anti-Israel bias.
Recently, WCC published on its website a statement from its member churches in the Palestinian territories in which the Balfour Declaration of 1917 was described as “unlawful” and “marking 100 years of oppression,” thus rejecting any rights for the Jewish people to live in their own state in their ancestral homeland. These rights, Sandell said, were clearly established under international law in San Remo already in 1920. The Palestinian churches further urged WCC to step up efforts to boycott Israel, which it calls “a colonial apartheid state.”
The European Coalition for Israel also noted that event though WCC has been very outspoken about the Israeli-Arab conflict in the past, the organization hasn’t issued any statements on the recent UNESCO resolutions that denied any Jewish or Christian history in the Holy Land by declaring heritage sites, such as the Tomb of the Patriarchs, the Temple Mount and the Western Wall, as exclusively Muslim holy sites.
Sources: Jerusalem Post and Jihad Watch