flickr EU/ECHO/Caroline Gluck
Gaza (Agenzia Fides) - The ruins of an ancient Byzantine church, re-emerged during construction work of a shopping center, have been removed by bulldozers and the local authorities did nothing to protect the precious historical and archaeological site. The episode of severe neglect, which took place last week, has provoked strong reactions of condemnation from some Palestinian Christians, rrlaunched by Israeli press.
The workers, with their bulldozers, according to reconstructions provided by local sources, found the remains of a large Byzantine church of at least 1500 years ago, but continued their work of digging to prepare the foundation of the shopping center under construction, without stopping the work. In particular Father Ibrahim Nairouz, Palestinian Anglican priest residing in Nablus protested, who denounced the incident in two letters sent to the Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority, Rami Hamdallah, and to the Palestinian Minister of Antiquities and Tourism, Rula Maayah. "If they had found the remains of a mosque or a synagogue or any other ancient structure" wondered Fr. Nairouz in statements reported by the Israeli press, "would they have handled the situation in the same way?" (GV) ( Agenzia Fides 08/04/2016)