Latin patriarch of Jerusalem hits out at Palestinian infighting
BETHLEHEM, West Bank, Dec 25, 2006 (AFP) - The Latin patriarch of Jerusalem, a Palestinian, used his Christmas sermon in Christ's birthplace early Monday to condemn the recent infighting among Palestinians and call on regional leaders to become "peacemakers".
"Christmas has come this year in difficult circumstances, made even worse by internal squabbles," Patriarch Michel Sabbah said in his sermon at the chapel beside the Church of the Nativity.
"The fratricidal struggle is leading toward more deaths and a new slavery that we are imposing on ourselves," said the first Palestinian to become Latin patriarch of Jerusalem, speaking in Arabic and French.
He went on: "To set myself up against my brother is to set myself up against God, the creator of my brother and my own creator ... these fratricidal struggles are another danger for all Palestinians and for the Christians of the Orient."
The fighting between the military wings of Hamas and Fatah since December 16 has resulted in 15 dead and more than 100 wounded.