In a letter addressed to the United States' President Barack Obama, the Roman Catholic peace movement Pax Christi International, together with ten other US churches and Christian organizations, has called for an "immediate end to the violence – as well as its underlying causes – in Palestine and Israel".
The news agency Reuters reports that some "1,000 Palestinian Muslims fleeing Israeli shells devastating their Gaza neighborhood have found shelter in a building they otherwise would rarely if ever enter, the city's 12th-century Greek Orthodox Church."
Expressing grave concern over the escalation of military operations in Gaza, the WCC general secretary Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit said, “Hostilities must cease. Israel, Palestine and the surrounding region must be offered the hope of peace: a peace based in justice, a lasting peace that may lead toward reconciliation”.
The Palestine Israel Ecumenical Forum (PIEF) was launched by the WCC in 2007 to catalyze and co-ordinate new and existing church advocacy for peace, aimed at ending the illegal occupation of Palestinian territories in accordance with UN resolutions, and demonstrate its commitment to inter-religious action for peace and to justice that serves all peoples of the region.
PIEF acts to
- challenge government support for the occupation
- challenge public support for the occupation
- challenge theological and biblical justifications for the occupation and
- maintain viable the Palestinian Christian presence in the Holy Land.