Police arrest Jewish teen suspected of vandalizing Jerusalem monastery

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A Jewish teenager suspected of vandalizing a Jerusalem monastery with anti-Christian graffiti has been arrested.

The suspect, 16, was arrested on Wednesday and questioned before appearing in the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court. The graffiti was discovered on Saturday night at Dormition Abbey, located on Mount Zion just outside the Old City of Jerusalem.

Later on Wednesday, a suspected 15-year-old accomplice was taken in for questioning, according to the Israel Police.

The graffiti, written in Hebrew, included: “Christians to Hell,” “May his name be obliterated,” and “Death to the heathen Christians the enemies of Israel.”

It is not the first time that the abbey has been targeted. Anti-Christian graffiti was painted on the abbey’s walls in 2013 and 2012. Pope Francis celebrated Mass at the abbey during a visit in 2014.

The abbey is believed to be the site where the Virgin Mary died. It is located next to the site considered to be the tomb of King David.

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