Palestinians celebrate Holy Fire ceremony under Israeli restrictions
The Israeli occupation increases its restrictions against Christians to only allow 3,000 worshippers to attend the Holy Fire ceremony in the Palestinian Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
Palestinian Orthodox Christians in Al-Quds are celebrating the Holy Fire ceremony under occupation and siege imposed by the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) at a time when "Israel" hopes to excise the Arab identity of Al-Quds, comprised of both Christian and Muslim rituals, from Palestine's capital city.
The presence of IOF in the church and its vicinity has drawn anger from churches given that the ceremony, symbolizing the resurrection of Jesus Christ, typically draws thousands of worshippers to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, in Occupied Palestine, where it is believed that Jesus was buried.
Israeli forces are attacking Christians trying to attend the #HolyLight ceremony.— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) April 15, 2023
Thousands of #Palestinian Christians and pilgrims filled #AlQuds' Old City to celebrate the ceremony, under a heavy Israeli police presence that has drawn anger from churches.
But Israeli police… pic.twitter.com/bvChGUEuWK
This year the IOF limited the number of worshippers allowed to enter the church and pray in the vicinity of the church. While typically the church fits as many as 10,000 worshipers, "Israel's" restrictions only allowed for 1,800 worshippers inside and 1,200 outside.
Moreover, the city was filled with checkpoints hindering the ability of Palestinians and worshippers to reach the Church. Earlier, the church's leader had announced that they will cooperate with any restrictions imposed by the IOF.
Resistance Axis Platform: Hanna says Everyone is entrusted with Al-Quds
Theodosius Atallah Hanna, the Archbishop of Sebastia from the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of occupied Palestine said, during the "Al-Quds Podium" event on Friday, that everyone is entrusted with Al-Quds, stressing that "our unity is a strength for us, and we were and will remain united in this blessed land."
Hanna indicated that whoever storms Al-Aqsa and prevents Muslims from reaching their holy sites is the same one who conspires against Christians.
He stressed that there is no force in the world capable of liquidating the Palestinian cause and stealing Al-Quds from its rightful owners.
"من يقتحم الأقصى ويمنع المسلمين من الوصول إلى مقدساتهم هو نفسه الذي يتآمر على المسيحيين".— قناة الميادين (@AlMayadeenNews) April 13, 2023
المطران عطالله حنا ضمن فعالية #منبر_القدس #الضفة_درع_القدس #القدس #فلسطين #يوم_القدس_العالمي pic.twitter.com/Ws1riJtOXZ
The Archbishop also appealed to all Islamic and Christian religious authorities to hold consultations for the sake of occupied Al-Quds.
Archbishop Atallah Hanna also stressed that Al-Quds Day is to remind everyone of their responsibilities toward occupied Al-Quds, adding that a right that someone is always after can never be lost.
Elsewhere, he pointed out that there are some sides who hope that there will be a new Nakba in order to empty Palestine, underlining, that they will remain in Al-Quds and will protect its sanctities.