JERUSALEM (Armradio) — A group of Israeli extremist settlers entered the Armenian Quarter’s Goverou Bardez [Cows’ Garden] on Sunday November 5, where the Armenian community was having a peaceful sit-in to prevent the further illegal demolition of the interior walls of the Cows’ Garden, Save the ArQ Movement reports.
Danny Rothman and George Warwar, representatives of Xana Capital, backed with about 15 armed settlers and attack dogs, demanded the expulsion of Armenians, calling it their land. Warwar threatened the community, exclaiming that he’ll “get them one by one.” The settlers were also active, announcing that the Armenians are all “Goys and when the Messiah comes, [they] will all die.”
The Armenian community refused to back down and stood firmly on the rightfully owned property. Save the ArQ Movement community leaders Hagop Djernazian and Setrag Balian and the legal team, led by international lawyer Karnig Kerkonian, convened an emergencymeeting and a member of the team, Eitan Peleg, arrived on scene to negotiate the stand down.
Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem Archbishop Nourhan Manougian also arrived on the scene and stood side by side with the Armenian community of Jerusalem, along with priests and bishops. The community stood strong, with 200 members in unity to prevent the takeover and save the Armenian Quarter.
Last week the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem announces that a letter was sent on October 26, 2023 to Xana Gardens Ltd. whereby the Patriarchate informed Xana Gardens of the cancellation of the agreement signed on 8/7/2021 regarding the Armenian Gardens in the Old City, Jerusalem.
A deal had earlier been signed by the Armenian Patriarchate that would hand up to 25% of the quarter to a commercial entity for a 99-year lease. The reported intention was to build a luxury hotel on some of the land that is currently a parking lot, but is on prime real estate nestled just within the Old City walls.
The deal in question was supposedly a 99-year lease to a Jewish developer who will build a luxury hotel on the land.