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Feb-25-2010 02:38TweetFollow @OregonNews
Israeli Decision on West Bank Shrines Launches Protests in PalestineSalem-News.com Staff Report
Rachel's Tomb in Bethlehem and the Cave of the Patriarchs (Sanctuary of Abraham) in Hebron have been designated Jewish places.
(RAMALLAH) - A decision by Israel to list two biblical tombs in Palestinian towns on a list of Israeli heritage sites, is the latest move against this endangered population, living under the heel of Israeli occupation.
The move has outraged Palestinians and sparked clashes in Hebron, where Israeli soldiers fired tear gas and stun grenades at Palestinians protesting the Israeli decision.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas suggested that Israel’s actions could spark what he called “a religious war.”
The controversial Israeli decision was also criticized by Palestinian Public Works minister Mohammed Shtayyeh.
Yasser Abed Rabbo, Palestine Liberation Organization's (PLO) secretary general, told a news conference in Ramallah that considering Rachel's Tomb in Bethlehem and the Cave of the Patriarchs (Sanctuary of Abraham) in Hebron as Jewish places "undermines the efforts to resume peace talks."
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu approved the Israeli government declaration earlier this week, which deems Rachel's Tomb in Bethlehem and the Cave of the Patriarchs (Sanctuary of Abraham) in Hebron as Jewish sites. Like many sites on the West Bank, both are sacred to both Muslims and Jews.
Special thanks to Democracy Now and Xinhua for information in this report.
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