Court Upholds Sale of Church Properties to Jewish Group in Old City

YERUSHALAYIM (AP) -

Israel’s High Court has ruled against the Greek Orthodox Church in a long-running legal battle over the sale of three properties in predominantly Palestinian eastern Yerushalayim to a Jewish group.

The ruling handed down on Monday was part of a protracted dispute over the 2004 sale of Old City properties, including two Palestinian-run hotels, to Ateret Cohanim, an Israeli organization that aims to increase the Jewish presence in Palestinian areas of the contested holy city.

The church had claimed that its former patriarch secretly sold the buildings without authorization.