OCP News Service – 20/5/21
Global: A Statement by George Jospe, Chairman of the Orthodoxy Cognate PAGE (Pan-Orthodox Christian Society) on the ongoing Israel-Palestine Conflict.
The tension between Israel and Palestine or between Jews and Arabs seems to be an unending phenomenon. There are many reasons, and a detailed discussion on them is not envisaged here.
Both Jews and Arabs are claiming Palestine their homeland. After World War II, many Jews started fleeing from Europe as they could not survive there, alleging persecutions. They were seeking a homeland for themselves. In 1947, UNO voted to divide Palestine into two: separate Jewish and Arabic states. Jerusalem was turning out an international city. Though the Jews welcomed this, Arabs objected and thus this formula was not implemented. With this, the British, occupant rulers of Palestine left the place and the Jews declared the creation of the State of Israel. This followed severe fighting between the two and a cease-fire emerged in due course with Jews occupying a large area there.
Consequently, Jordan occupied West Bank and Egypt occupied Gaza. Jerusalem was divided with Israelites on the West and Jordanians on the East. But a peace agreement was not signed.
In 1967, war broke out again with Israel annexing East Jerusalem and West Bank. Ever since the area remains tension-filled. Both sects interpreted religious texts to their own advantages.
Need of the hour is the establishment of lasting peace. For this, both sides should have the right focus, which is nothing but peace and peace alone, and not misinterpretation of scriptures. Both sides should accept the truth that God, whatever name they address Him, love peace and not claims. Other nations, who step into the shoes of mediators ought to set aside selfish agendum and work for true peace.
Chairman of the Orthodoxy Cognate PAGE Society
OCP News Service