Forces of Israeli occupation didn t hesitate to attack a number of peaceful monks at the Coptic monastery of Deir El-Sultan in Jerusalem and arrested one of them before he was released later. The members of the Deir El-Sultan clergy had been peacefully sitting-in to protest an Israeli move to forcibly seize the monastery which is located within the walls of the Old City of East Jerusalem..
The importance of the Monastery of the Sultan to the Copts is that it is their direct route from the Monastery of St. Anthony to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. This monastery is the seat of the Egyptian Patriarchate and the Coptic Church in Jerusalem. The occupation forces took over the monastery without right and gave it to the Ethiopian Church on 25 April 1970. Ever since, the Egyptian Church has been doing its best to recover it.
Ownership of the monastery has been always to the Coptic orthodox church that had all the documents to prove so, and had a decision of the high Israeli court which said that the monastery known by the locals as Deir al sultan must back to the hand of the Coptic church the soley owner of it.
The Israeli government tried to seize the monastery without taking into consideration the consent of its owners. The monks tried to demonstrate peacefully to demand their rights, but they were faced with force and violence.
It is time to unite against the arrogant Israeli government that doesn t respect even the rule of its courts to hand over the monastery to the Coptic Orthodox Church. We have to demand our rights as Coptic people all over the world and to demonstrate peacefully before the United Nations and the Israeli embassies to denounce such attacks and to demand the restoration of our monastery.