In a response to a totally nonviolent protest by Palestinian Christians and Muslims demanding their freedom of movement the Israeli army has effectively banned entry of Christian pilgrims and tourists from visiting the birth place of Christ.
The protest on March 28th focused on the Israeli restrictions to Palestinians from Bethlehem from participating in the Palm Sunday events in the holy city of Jerusalem, a mere 8 miles away. For centuries Christians from around the world have reenacted the triumphant entry of Jesus to Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives one week before his crucifixion, burial and resurrection.
Protesters marched from the Nativity Church in Bethlehem towards the checkpoint near Rachel's Tomb. In addition to Palestinians, the protest included members of international solidarity groups as well as a number of Israeli peace activists.
Additionally, and in keeping w
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