The Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America was deeply distressed to learn of an attack by the civil and armed forces of the Palestinian Authority on the Russian Holy Trinity Monastery in Hebron.
According to a statement issued by the monastery “Abraham’s Oak” of Hebron, this church is the property of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia, an American legal church body. According to the report, the Palestinian Authority demanded that the occupants of the monastery vacate the property “within an hour and a half” and upon their refusal, brute force was employed resulting in the hospitalization of the Abbess as well as bodily injury to other monastics. The report continues to say that one of the occupants, a elderly and sick cleric of the church, is being forcibly detained and the church is unable to communicate with him and is concerned for his welfare.
The Orthodox Union condemns this action which is in flagrant violation of international law. We urgently appeal to U.S. officials to take whatever legal steps are necessary to address this outrage.