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Rex
World News

MP calls on UK government to protect Christian religious sites in Israel

The member for the Wrekin was speaking just months after the Church of the Multiplication on the Sea of Galilee was victim to an arson attack.

Wikimedia

Speaking shortly after the blaze, Bishop Declan Lang, Chairman of the Catholic Bishops' International Affairs department, said: "Attacking, desecrating and damaging any church or house of worship anywhere in the world is an inexcusable act.

"This is more so in the Holy Land that is home to followers of the three monotheistic traditions."

There have been a number of attacks on Christian sites in recent years as well as a rise in anti-Christian graffiti.

Responding to Mark Pritchard's written question, Foreign Office Minister Tobias Ellwood said: "We condemn all extremist violence, including attacks against religious buildings. We are aware that on 18 June, the Benedictine Church of the Multiplication at Tabgha, on the Sea of Galilee, was set on fire and vandalised with graffiti.

"Officials from our Embassy in Tel Aviv raised this at the time with the Israeli Foreign Ministry and National Security Council.

"On 10 September the Prime Minister, my right hon. Friend the Member for Witney (Mr Cameron), and the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), raised their concerns for peace in the region with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu."

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