Jerusalem church leader: Israeli extremists threaten Christian presence in city

(REUTERS) — The Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem has accused radical Israeli groups of threatening the presence of Christians in the holy city, in remarks that Israeli officials rejected as baseless.

In a column in the Times of London on Saturday, His Beatitude, Theophilos III, said he believed the aim was to drive the Christian community from Jerusalem’s Old City, which has sites sacred to Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

Israel captured East Jerusalem, including the Old City, along with the West Bank and Gaza Strip in a 1967 war. It annexed East Jerusalem after the war in a move that has not won international recognition.

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