(JTA) — Israel’s embassy in Ireland posted a message on its Facebook page saying the Palestinians in Bethlehem would have lynched the Jewish Jesus and Mary if they were alive today.
The message posted Monday morning was removed about two hours later.
"A thought for Christmas … If Jesus and mother Mary were alive today, they would, as Jews without security, probably end up being lynched in Bethlehem by hostile Palestinians. Just a thought …," the message read. A copy of a painting of Jesus and Mary accompanied the message.
It was replaced with a new message reading, "To whom it may concern: An image of Jesus and Mary with a derogatory comment about Palestinians was posted without the consent of the administrator of the Facebook page. We have removed the post in question immediately. Apologies to anyone who may have been offended. Merry Christmas!"
The Facebook page is considered "semi-official," according to its About section.
It is not the first time that the embassy, run by Ambassador Boaz Modai, and his wife, deputy head of mission Nurit Tinari Modai, has made controversial statements.