AJC Condemns Desecration of Catholic Cemetery Near Jerusalem

American Jewish Committee calls on Israel to ' prevent such odious acts and to punish the perpetrators.'

FILE PHOTO: Crosses broken by vandals at the Beit Jamal Monastery near Beit Shemesh, 2016

The American Jewish Committee condemned on Sunday the desecration of a Catholic cemetery belonging to a monastery near Jerusalem, calling to bring the perpetrators to justice.

Unknown assailants desecrated the Catholic cemetery, which belongs to the Beit Jamal Monastery near Beit Shemesh, west of Jerusalem. Several crosses were broken in the incident. The vandalism took place last month but only became public in recent days after a police complaint was filed.

“The Beit Jamal vandalism is an attack on Christianity and an assault on freedom of religion in Israel,” said Rabbi David Rosen, AJC International Director of Interreligious Affairs. “It is essential for Israel to do its utmost to prevent such odious acts and to punish the perpetrators.”

The Franciscan monastery has been a target of vandalism in the past. Catholic officials say that a similar incident took place in the end of September, and in March 2014 anti-Christian slogans were spray-painted on the monastery's walls.

In 2013 a firebomb was thrown at the monastery.

Unknown assailants break crosses at the cemetery of Beit Jamal’s Monastery (a Catholic monastery located near Beit...

Posted by Wadie Abunassar on Saturday, January 9, 2016