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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova's comment on the actions of Jewish extremists in the Old City of Jerusalem

23 March 2023 19:20

On March 19, during the morning service, Jewish radicals attacked the Orthodox church of the Assumption of the Virgin in Jerusalem. The extremists tried to inflict physical harm on the clergy and intimidate parishioners and pilgrims. This thuggery cannot but cause deep concern. We note the alarming trend of increasing number of anti-Christian incidents recently, including attacks on churches and cemeteries of various Christian denominations, clergy, monastics and worshippers.

We believe that there can be no excuse for such criminal acts. We hope that the Israeli authorities will come out with an unequivocal statement on what happened and take exhaustive measures to bring the perpetrators to justice and prevent such incidents in the future.

The situation around holy places requires special attention in today's tense situation at sites of Palestinian-Israeli confrontation, considering the approaching Christian, Jewish and Muslim holidays. In this context, we would like to emphasise the need to exercise restraint, observe the historically established status quo and show respect to representatives of all faiths in the Holy Land, as well as suppress attempts to incite inter-faith hatred.

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