Desecration of Religious Sites Intolerable – UN official

Israeli soldiers violated the sanctity of a mosque in Jenin. (Photo: video grab)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

“Religious sites need to be respected and cannot be perverted in one way or another.” – Stephane Dujarric

A United Nations official has denounced the desecration of religious sites, following footage on social media that showed Israeli soldiers performing Jewish rituals inside a mosque in the West Bank city of Jenin.

“The desecration of religious sites should not be tolerated. And so that is against common decency, to say the least,” said Stephane Dujarric, the spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

“Religious sites need to be respected and cannot be perverted in one way or another,” Dujarric told reporters on Thursday. 

His remarks came after Israel’s far-right National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir shared a video of soldiers performing Jewish rituals inside a mosque in Jenin.

It shows an Israeli soldier reciting the Shema Yisrael prayer on the mosque’s loudspeaker, thus broadcasting it to thousands of Palestinians in the city and adjacent areas.  

Mockingly, the soldier declared, “In the name of God, the merciful. Here is the spokesperson of the IDF.”

“For the residents of the camp, the story is over, we will not allow the presence of armed men inside the camp. The future will be clean, we want you to live with dignity in the camp, there is no power beyond the power of Allah,” the soldier added.

They are also walking around the mosque with their military boots. 

The soldiers have reportedly been disciplined.

Jenin has served as a center for Palestinian Resistance to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank. Its fighters, all local youth, have fought fierce battles against well-equipped Israeli soldiers, who have killed and wounded hundreds of Palestinians in the camp since the start of the year.


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