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The Marienkirche Iqrits

Iqrit ( Arabic إقرت, DMG Iqrit or Iqrith  /إقرث / Iqriṯ ) was a Christian Palestinian village in northern Galilee , the entire population of which was displaced by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) in 1948 during the Palestine War.


Iqrit is located about 25 km northeast of the Mediterranean city ​​of Akkon near the border between Israel and Lebanon . The community area is now largely used by the Israeli settlements of Shomera , Even Menachem and Goren .


During the Canaanite period, a figure of the god Melkart was erected in Iqrit . The Crusaders referred to the place as Acref , a name still used today by the Bedouins of the northern Galilee. After the conquest of all of Palestine by the Ottoman Empire in 1517 , Iqrit belonged to the Nahiya of Acre, a sub-district of the Liwa (district) of Safed . During the time of the British League of Nations mandate for Palestine from 1919, Iqrit was connected to the coastal road from Akkon to Rosh Hanikra by a road to Tarbikha running parallel to the Lebanese border . A photo from 1939 shows the village at the top of a hill surrounded by fruit trees.

The UN partition plan for Palestine of 1947 provided that Iqrit and other parts of northern Galilee should belong to the Arab part of Palestine after its partition. During the Palestine War, however, Iqrit was occupied on October 31, 1948 by the Haganah's Oded Brigade as part of Operation Hiram . On November 5, 1948, the Israelis forced the residents of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church to leave the village with the assurance that they could return after the fighting was over. Some residents fled to Lebanon, most of them were trucked to the Druze city ​​of Rameh on the road between Acre and Safed.

Struggle to return

In 1951 the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that the residents of Iqrit could return to their homes and land, but on Christmas Day 1951 the Israeli army destroyed all buildings with the exception of St. Mary's Church and the cemetery. All attempts to resettle were thwarted by the Israelis in the following years. Only renovation work on the church and the cemetery and burials were permitted.

Since 2012, a group of young descendants of the displaced residents of Iqrit has been staying in the area of ​​St. Mary's Church to protest the Israeli government's continued ignoring of the decisions of the country's Supreme Court.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Your light should conquer darkness in FAZ of December 24, 2015, page 13

Coordinates: 33 ° 5 '  N , 35 ° 17'  E