Crowds pack Bethlehem for Christmas
Huge crowds have turned out in Bethlehem for one of the biggest Christmas eve celebrations in years.
Bethlehem is overflowing with tourists and Christian pilgrims from all over the world.
Brightly decorated shops and restaurants are doing a brisk trade in what has turned out to be a record year.
By midnight, thousands of people are expected in Manger Square adjoining the Church of Nativity, which is built over the cave where Christians believe Jesus was born.
Among those attending midnight mass in the church will be Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas and prime minister Salam Fayyad, both Muslims.
Thousands more outside will enjoy choir music and a live concert.
According to Palestinian Authority figures, at least 90,000 people are expected to flood into the town over the Christmas period.