Menu JTA Search

Pope Feels Changing Character of Jerusalem Disservice to Judaism, Religious Spirit

Tunisian Foreign Minister Mohammed Masmoudi, who had an audience with Pope Paul VI Saturday, claimed today that the Pontiff believes that anyone who tries to change the character of Jerusalem does a great disservice to Judaism and to the religious spirit of the Holy City. Masmoudi visited Rome as the bearer of a personal message to the Pope from President Habib Bourgaiba of Tunisia. The message reportedly contained charges concerning the “Judaization” of Jerusalem. Masmoudi said in Tunis today that “The Pope is concerned with Jerusalem, hoping on one hand that Moslems and Christians will remain in that city and on the other hand that Jerusalem keeps its immemorial character.” According to the Foreign Minister, the Pope “is concerned lest attempts to change the city’s urban and other characteristics will strike a blow to the religious spirit of Jerusalem.”