Wednesday, December 19, 2007

High Court halts State recognition of Greek Orthodox Patriarch


I know this is should to make me feel better, but I have a deep distrust for anything to do with the Israeli Supreme Court, especially under the right-wing-baiting, arab kissing Chief "Justice."

If there is any group more hell-bent on destroying Israel than the Knesset, it is the Supreme Court.


Court issues injunction preventing State form naming Theopilus III as Irineos I's successor. Arab community agitated as records of government committee on Patriarchy suggest shady dealings behind Archdiocese's choice of candidate

Aviram Zino
Published: 12.19.07, 14:57 / Israel News

The High Court issued an injunction Wednesday, preventing the Ministry of Interior from recognizing Archbishop Theopilus III as the Greek Orthodox Patriarch in place of his predecessor, Irineos I.

Israel formerly agreed to recognize Archbishop Theopilus Gianopoulos as the Greek Orthodox Patriarch and head of the Greek Orthodox Church in Jerusalem, in mid October; but Archbishop Irineos I, who was relieved of his duties by the Archdiocese's Council after being linked to a church holdings scandal, petitioned against the nomination.

Holy War
Irineos petitioned the court to revoke his dismissal citing it was not made under the Orthodox Church's law, but rather under Greek law, rendering it invalid.

The Ministerial Committee on Greek Patriarch affairs' met on the matter in July; and the meeting's public records, which suggest Theopilus III agreed to future real estate deals with the State, have sparked controversy in the Arab community.

Shady dealings?
"The Patriarchy's history is intertwined with that of Israel," Theopilus is quoted in the minutes. "I wish to maintain our friendship, but I can't do that when the lack of State recognition prevents me from following through on our commitments." The Patriarchy, added Theopilus, operates under Israeli law.

Theopilus further admitted that during a visit to Jordan he was "forced to sign a document regarding the Patriarchy's holdings with a Jordanian individual," in order to maintain his candidacy for the esteemed post.

According to the minutes, attorney Rami Mugrabi, who represents Theopilus III, told Finance Minister Ronnie Bar-On – who attended the meeting – that Theopilus had to "sign a document saying he will renege on all the real estate deals made by Irineos."

When asked whether the deals in question involved lands sold to Jews, Mugrabi told the ministers the document "had no such wording."

Did you make any deals whatsoever with Hamas, the committee asked Theopilus, "I refused to meet with their delegates and canceled a planned visit to Gaza so they won't be able to take advantage of my being there," answered the archbishop.

The records, which were published in the a the local, Arab-language al-Anwan al-Raisy newspaper in Nazareth, have stirred the Arab community, as the paper reportedly issued a statement to Arab press world-wide saying "the Greek Patriarch claims he was the victim of Jordanian extortion," and "the Greek Patriarch says Jerusalem in under Jewish law and Israeli sovereignty."

The High Court is expected to render its ruling on State recognition of Archbishop Theopilus III as the Greek Orthodox Patriarch, next week.

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