Only 55 Palestinian Christians from Gaza to enter West Bank for Xmas
Israeli authorities have only allowed 55 Christians in the Gaza Strip to enter the West Bank and Jerusalem to celebrate Christmas, according to local news agency Ma’an. The Orthodox Church in Gaza said among the 600 official requests that were submitted to Israel, occupation authorities agreed to grant travel permits to just three children and 52 Palestinian elders mostly over the age of 60. This came after the Israeli Defence Ministry said in a statement on Sunday it would allow Palestinian Christians in Gaza to visit Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank “in accordance with security assessments and without regard to age”, reversing an earlier decision not to issue them permits, a move that was met with immediate backlash by Christian Palestinian leaders as well as Gisha, an Israeli rights group.
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