In his annual Christmas message Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called Jesus a Palestinian messenger of hope.
In a Christmas message, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has referred to Jesus as a “Palestinian” messenger of hope.
Palestinian officials said Abbas used the term in a historic context, applying to all those in the Holy Land at the time, regardless of religion.
Few scholars dispute that Jesus was raised as a Jew.
Abbas’ emailed comments Monday appeared to be part of an effort to reach global public opinion and strengthen links between the Palestinian and Christian narratives.
Abbas said Jesus was a “Palestinian messenger who would become a guiding light for millions.”
A majority of Palestinians including Abbas are Muslims, but he and predecessor Yasser Arafat have called for unity of Palestinian Christians and Muslims.
Israel responded to the claim, “He should have read the Gospel before uttering such offensive nonsense.”