Israeli restrictions dampen pilgrimages to Jerusalem for Holy Week
April 18, 2011
The number of pilgrims participating in Holy Week ceremonies in Jerusalem is down this year, as restrictions on movement between Israel and the Palestinian territories take their toll.
Archbishop Fouad Twal, the Latin-rite Patriarch of Jerusalem, led about 10,000 people in a traditional Palm Sunday procession from Bethpage into the Old City of Jerusalem. That number represented only half the usual participation. A Church spokesman explained that many Christians from nearby Bethlehem and Ramallah were unable to obtain the permits needed to join in the procession.
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