Bethlehem, the traditional birthplace of Jesus, has been turned into a large prison by the WALL, Israel is building in the West Bank. Till this wall more and more strangles and isolates the city, it used to be a bustling cultural and spiritual center. With a population of roughly 61,000, the Bethlehem area is surrounded by checkpoints and the wall, which is complete on both sides of the town. As a result, Bethlehem is isolated from the rest of the West Bank and from Jerusalem.

Israel justifies the wall with being forced to keep out Palestinian suicide bombers, claiming it had stopped already dozens of suicide bombers, but Palestinians call it an Israeli attempt to steal land they claim for a state. This situation has drastically complicated the daily life for tens of thousands of it’s population.

Latin Patriarch Michel Sabbah said in an earlier Christmas message that only an end to the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories could bring peace. “Ending the oppression and the humiliation of the Palestinians would at the same time put an end to the fear and insecurity of the Israelis!”

Bethlehem MUST be a free city! It is a symbol of PEACE, a symbol for all the Christian world and all humanity!


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