Palestinians Set Fire to a Biblical Heritage Site

 “This arson shows that the Palestinian Authority’s occupation is no different than that of ISIS!”

Relations between Israelis and Palestinians have never been particularly kind, but since Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s address to the UN General Assembly in September, violence has escalated. This was made clear when Palestinians set fire to a Biblical Heritage Site.

When Abbas addressed the crowd, he petitioned the UN for support in their attempt to overrule the Oslo accords of 1993 and 1995 and accused Israel of sabotaging US peace negotiations in the Middle East. He even stated that Israel was specifically behind the recent conflict occurring at the Dome of the Rock and the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem. Abbas called on fellow Palestinians to rejoice as the Palestinian flag was raised at the UN headquarters in New York for the first time.  Palestinian Authority had petitioned the UN to sanction the raising of their flag along with other non-state flags such as that of the Vatican.  When it was put to a vote, only eight countries voted against the motion including Israel and her known allies, the United States and the United Kingdom. While this does not necessarily give Palestine more power, Israeli officials expressed concern that the motion would throw a spark on the already fiery conflict.

Since that day, nearly 40 Israeli and Palestinian citizens have been killed, with hundreds more wounded in stabbings and shootings attacks. BBC News has reported that the number of stabbing attacks on Israelis by Palestinians has more than tripled since September, causing Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu to increase security measures across Jerusalem. He announced this week that any Palestinians found attacking an Israeli would no longer have the right to live in Jerusalem. He also announced that police checkpoints would be placed outside of all Palestinian neighborhoods.

While the conflict originally was focused around the Temple Mount, a holy site for both Jews and Muslims, the new Israeli checkpoints have caused an even greater tension between the groups.

This tension is what drove hundreds of Palestinian rioters to gather around the site of Joseph’s tomb, located in the West Bank. This site has recently become an extremely popular pilgrimage site for religious Jews, but last night Palestinians set fire to the Biblical site. While no one was injured in the fire, Israeli citizens are outraged.

Avigdor Lieberman, former foreign minister with Benjamin Netanyahu, has stated, “This arson shows that the Palestinian Authority’s occupation is no different than that of ISIS,” with President Abbas reportedly encouraging his followers to kill Israelis and destroy sites of holy and historical significance.

Israel is increasing security around the country in response to this newest instance of violence, but it makes one wonder, what will happen next?

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Do you wonder what the Bible has to say about these events?

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  • Why Israel is at the center of so much controversy in the Middle East
  • Why the march to Armageddon has already begun
  • God’s eternal plan for both the Jewish people and Christians

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