AMMAN — On Wednesday, April 10, Archbishop Nourhan Manougian, the Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem, received formal recognition from King Abdullah II of Jordan, who presented Archbishop Manougian with a royal decree affirming the latter’s election as the 97th Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem and Jordan. The formal ceremony is traditionally held following the election of new church leaders in the Holy Land.

During the meeting King Abdullah stressed the importance of preserving the Islamic and Christian character of Jerusalem and supporting the Palestinians living in the holy city. He also asserted the need to support Jerusalemites whilst they brave the challenges and the difficult conditions they are living under, in reference to Israeli attempts to empty the city of its Arab residents.

His Majesty congratulated Manougian on his new post, which he assumed following a Royal Decree issued earlier to approve the nomination of the patriarch.

Stressing his commitment to foster the values of tolerance, love and co-existence among Muslims and Christians and to strengthen the common bonds between them, the King cited the historic agreement recently reached by him and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

The agreement, which was signed last month, bestows on the Monarch the role of custodian of the holy places in East Jerusalem in a bid to unify efforts to protect Jerusalem and the holy sites, especially in light of challenges and unilateral Israeli measures and attempts to change the Islamic-Christian identity of the Arab city.

The Patriarch commended King Abdullah’s continued support for the church in its efforts to preserve the holy sites, and his support for Palestinians, especially those living in Jerusalem.

In remarks during the meeting, the Patriarch said, “You have honoured me with your issuance of a Royal Decree, appointing me as the Patriarch of the Armenian Orthodox followers in Jordan and Jerusalem,” asserting that he will exert his best efforts to meet the expectations of his job and to be worthy of the King’s confidence in him.

Manougian is the 97th Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem and Jordan. He succeeded Patriarch Torkom Manougian.

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