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Palestinians Attacking Christian Churches

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Palestinians open fire inside Nablus church.

GAZA CITY (AFP) - Assailants angry at Pope Benedict XVI’s comments on Islam targeted several churches across the Palestinian territories on the second day of attacks directed at the Christian church.

In Gaza City, a group calling itself the Islamic Organization of the Swords of Righteousness claimed responsibility for unleashing a volley of gunfire on the oldest church in the city.

“We carried out this shooting because of the pope’s statement, and he must apologise,” the caller, who refused to give his name, told AFP Saturday.

The attack came a day after a grenade exploded outside the same church and four days after the pope criticised connections between Islam and violence, particularly with regard to jihad, or “holy war”.

In the West Bank town of Nablus, gunmen threw Molotov cocktails at four churches of different denominations, Palestinian security sources told AFP.

In one incident, gunmen opened fire inside an empty Catholic church after the building’s entrance door was burnt down, the sources said.

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