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See Christian Priests Attack One Another With Brooms at Jesus' Suspected Birthplace


...a "frenzied turf battle."

Tis the season for Christian leaders to engage in an intense and violent battle inside of the Church of the Nativity (believed to be Jesus' birthplace) in Bethlehem.

A rip-roar fight apparently broke out between up to 100 Greek Orthodox and Armenian Apostolic priests and monks as they were cleaning the church in preparation for Orthodox Christmas celebrations coming in early January.

The clergy did everything but "turn the other cheek," as they swung brooms and attacked one another in what the USA Today called a "frenzied turf battle." The situation got so out of control that Palestinian police had to come in and break the fighting up.

Here's some footage:

The Telegraph has more:

Riot police were forced to restore order inside the basilica of the Nativity in Bethlehem after rival groups of Orthodox and Armenian clerics clashed in a dispute over the boundaries of their respective jurisdictions inside the church. [...]

Witnesses said the former Palestinian Minister of Tourism and Head of the Palestinian forces in the West Bank town were slightly injured during the incident.

Administration of the church is shared by Catholic, Orthodox, and Armenian Apostolic clerics and the relationships among the different groups have frequently been contentious with similar scuffles having broken out in previous years.

(H/T: USA Today)

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