UCA Statements

Statement on Israel-Palestine

01 March 2008

It was resolved to:

08.29.02 recognise the special interest of Christians in the Holy Land as the homeland of Jesus Christ and the birthplace of the Church, the special interest of Jews in the Holy Land as the Biblical "promised land", and the special interest of Muslims in the Holy Land as one of the sacred places visited by the prophet Muhammad;

08.29.03 note that the worldwide Christian community, especially through the World Council of Churches and the Vatican, has advocated and worked for many years for an end to the occupation of Palestine and for a just and lasting peace for the peoples of Israel and Palestine;

08.29.04 affirm the right of the state of Israel to exist, and to exist within secure internationally-recognised borders, without the threat of terrorist attacks from Palestinians or from any others, and without threats to its existence from any other state.

08.29.05 affirm the right of the people of Palestine to be freed from more than 40 years of military occupation by Israel, to live within secure internationally-recognised borders without harassment or violence perpetrated by any state or by any others, and to determine democratically their own future;

08.29.06 encourage the Australian Government to:

a) do all it can to support the current peace negotiations between Palestine and Israel, in the interests of ending the occupation and bringing a just and lasting peace to the peoples of Israel and Palestine;

b) increase its allocation of aid money to assist community development in Palestinian communities which have been impoverished by years of economic and social disadvantage.

08.29.07 encourage churches in Australia to pray for a just and lasting peace for the peoples of the Holy Land, and to support initiatives for peace between Palestine and Israel including visits by Australian Christians to the Christians of the Holy Land;

08.29.08 seek advice from Christian World Service and from the Canberra Ecumenical Working Group on Palestine-Israel as to how churches in Australia and the NCCA might work for a just and lasting peace between Palestine and Israel, including Australian participation in ecumenical initiatives such as the Ecumenical Accompaniment Program in Palestine & Israel (EAPPI), the Palestine Israel Ecumenical Forum (PIEF), International Church Action for Peace in Palestine and Israel (ICAPPI), and Christian Peacemaker Teams.

08.29.09 support the principle that Jerusalem should be an "open city" for all faiths and all peoples.

08.29.10 support the proposal for a joint visit to Israel and Palestine in 2009 by leaders from the Jewish, Christian and Muslim faiths in Australia.