Police in Israel arrested two teenagers on Friday. Who they said vandalized more than two dozen Christian graves at a historic Jerusalem cemetery earlier this week.
Graves of Christian figures at Jerusalem’s revered. Mount Zion Protestant cemetery were found pushed. And dragged from their foundations on Sunday. Unsettling the rival city’s Christian minority and drawing global condemnation. The cemetery is over 170 years old and houses prominent members of the armed forces and clergy in the holy city.
Late Thursday, the US Embassy’s Palestine Affairs Office said. It was “concerned” that the religious site had been targeted again – the second time in a decade.
“Damaging religious places is not acceptable to anyone,” the office said. “Jerusalem must be a city for all its people.”
Israeli police have not released the names of the suspects. But they said they were 18 and 14 years old and from central Israel. Security camera footage of the attack showed two young men dressed in clothing, Israeli police said. Jewish skullcaps and tzitzit, the knotted ritual fringes worn. By observant Jews, pounding on crosses, breaking tombstones and throwing debris at graves.
“Any damage to religious institutions and places is serious. And harms the unique and delicate fabric of life that exists in the city.” The police said, describing the act as “willful vandalism”. A Jerusalem court on Friday held a hearing to extend the detention of two teenagers by Israeli police.
The Anglican Church in Jerusalem condemned the desecration. As the latest hate crime to target Jerusalem’s Christian community. Amid decades of Israeli-Palestinian conflict.