(JNS.org) Before Israel removed its metal detectors at the Temple Mount, the World Council of Churches (WCC) had denounced the Jewish state’s implementation of bolstered security at the holy site as “corrosive.”
“Keeping the historical status quo and supporting equal rights for Christians, Muslims and Jews at these holy sites is vitally important to maintaining peace and de-escalating violence,” said Father Ioan Sauca, acting general secretary of the WCC.
“Denying access to holy sites for thousands of people who have traveled far to pray is not only a violation of the rights of those individuals, but also a corrosive act in the midst of an already-fragile peace,” he said.
The WCC claims to represent 550 million Christians in 110 countries.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center condemned the WCC’s statement, saying July 21, “If the WCC is truly interested in protecting the rights of all the prayers, they should denounce extremist protests and threats made against Istanbul’s leading synagogue, which has suffered two previous terrorist attacks.”
Israel decided July 24 to remove the Temple Mount metal detectors, which had been installed following the July 14 Arab terror attack that killed two Israeli Druze policemen near the holy site, in favor of “security measures based on advanced technologies.”