Two leading Christian groups vehemently criticized Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory. Subsequently, they demanded Israel end the “prison-like” conditions in Gaza and call on the United States to cancel their military aide budget.
The World Council of Churches (WCC) and The National Council of Churches of Christ (USA, NCC) gave a statement following what they called a “consultation on the Holy Land” this week. These two groups represent over 545 million Christians combined. They blame Israel for the tension citing that “keeping an entire population under occupation and even in a closed area, such as Gaza, in prison-like conditions is a grave and unsustainable situation”.
In an issued statement, they called on the United States to end its arming of various state and non-state people in the Middle East and to reconsider its proposed military aid package offered to Israel because the last thing Israel needs is more weapons. They had also requested that the U.S. end legislative efforts to penalize non-violent economic measures to influence Israeli policy.
They feel that no one should be denied rights, nor should they be denied for generations. They feel the unresolved conflict between Israel and Palestine centers around the need for justice, and until those goals are met, peace cannot exist. They cite that as Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza closes in on fifty years, generations have been suffering.
The organization was seemingly negative about a two-state solution citing them as elusive and not viable, yet long advocated.
The pro-Israel Anti-Defamation League referred to the statement as “disappointing, yet predictable”. They blame the WCC and NCC tendencies to solely blame Israel for the Middle East conflict and the failure of a two-state solution as wrong. It claims that the facts are wrong, and they are detached from the country’s realities.
Additionally, the American Jewish Committee accused both groups of a long history of anti-Israel bias.
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