19 November 2012
UN Photo/John Isaac
The statement notes that Palestinian Christians are the descendants of the first Christians who are also an organic and integral component of the Palestinian people who like their Palestinian Muslim brothers and sisters, have been denied their national and human rights for almost a century.
Palestine's Christians have endured dispossession and forced exile ever since 1948, when two thirds of them were forcibly expelled from their homes and since then their very presence has been under threat.
Their message is simple: to achieve peace, the world must also say enough to occupation and the degradation of human dignity.
The statement forcefully re-iterates that the current status quo is untenable. "On one side, there is a people under occupation and on the other, a belligerent occupying power that works tirelessly to distance us from the peace we seek and pray for. Ending Israeli occupation is the only way for Palestinians, Christians and Muslims, to enjoy a life of prosperity and progress."
The present initiative to enhance Palestine’s status in the United Nations to an Observer State is seen as a positive, step in the right direction for the cause of a just peace in the region.
The statement was issued before the latest outbreak of violence and current escalation of hostilities.