close
Advertisement
Can't connect right now! retry

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!
AFP
March 27, 2020

Jerusalem’s Church shuts as Israel ups anti-virus measures

World

AFP
March 27, 2020

JERUSALEM: Jerusalem's Church of the Holy Sepulchre, believed by Christians to house Christ´s tomb, was shut Wednesday, as Israel tightened movement restrictions and the Palestinians announced their first novel coronavirus death.

The church, located in Jerusalem's Old City, was closed shortly after 5:00 p.m. (1500 GMT), as Israel imposed a series of new measures meant to curb the spread of the virus, including shutting down places of worship.

"We have been informed of the closure. Our understanding is that it is for one week. We hope (the church) will reopen as soon as possible," said Wadie Abunassar, a spokesperson for the local clergy.

"We hope to reopen by Easter," he told AFP. The shuttering of the church to the public comes a short time ahead of Easter celebrations to be held this year on the second weekend of April, and days after Muslim authorities closed the nearby Al-Aqsa mosque compound, Islam´s third holiest site.

The new restrictions to curb the virus spread in Israel prohibited residents from leaving their

homes except to buy essentials such as food and medicine, to seek medical treatment or in some cases, for work. The measures were announced in a statement from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu´s office Wednesday and will be in place for seven days.