A story that is uncomfortable

Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God.The opening words of Handel’s Messiah are linked by many with the Christmas story. They are the plead(...)

Pope Francis and other senior Christian and Muslim clerics have urged members of the ancient Christian communities of the Middle East to stay on in the region despite conflict and discrimination. Photograph: Reuters/Osservatore Romano

Ahead of Christmas, senior Christian and Muslim clerics have urged members of the ancient Christian communities of the Middle East, the cradle of t(...)

Christian children take part in a demonstration  commemorating Assyrian Martyr Day  in Beirut’s Fanar district. Photograph:  Maya Hautefeuille/AFP/Getty Images

India is the latest country in which Christians have spoken out about their persecution. Christians of all denominations have issued a joint pre-Chris(...)

Israeli security forces stand next to the remains of a rocket  fired from the Gaza Strip towards Israel on Friday. Photograph: Reuters

Israeli aircraft bombed a Hamas base in the Gaza Strip on Friday for the first time since the end of a war in the territory, in response to a rocket t(...)

Ousted Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi gestures during his trial on charges of spying and terrorism. Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood organisation has been desigated a terrorist group by Cairo. Photograph: Amr Abdallah Dalsh/Reuters

Egypt is beset by foreign terrorists on its borders, organised domestic terrorists in Sinai and lone wolf terrorists who plant homemade bombs at vulne(...)

Remains of  the Abu Jamea family home following an Israeli army air strike. The Israeli military has opened an internal investigation into the incident. Photograph: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters

The Israeli military says it has opened an internal criminal investigation into one of the deadliest air strikes of the conflict in Gaza.At least 24 (...)

Gerry Adams during his visit to the West Bank town of Ramallah on December 4th, 2014. Adams will meet with the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and lay a wreath at the grave of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. Photograph: Atef Safadi/EPA

Israel has barred Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams from visiting the Gaza Strip during a three-day tour of the region. Mr Adams says he was disappointe(...)

Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu: Polls released after elections were announced showed that Netanyahu’s Likud would win 22 seats in the 120-seat Knesset. Photograph: Abir Sultan/EPA

The leaders of Israel’s coalition parties have agreed that elections will be held on March 17th and the mudslinging has already begun in what is expec(...)

Members of parliament applaud after the vote in the French National Assembly on Tuesday in favour of recognition of a Palestinian state. Photograph: Etienne Laurent/EPA

French lawmakers have urged their government to recognise Palestine, a symbolic move that will not immediately affect France’s diplomatic stance but d(...)

Palestinians warm themselves by a fire near the ruins of houses which witnesses said were destroyed by Israeli shelling in Gaza City December. Photograph: Mohammed Salem/Reuters

The Church of Ireland united dioceses of Dublin and Glendalough aim to raise €150,000 for the Al Ahli Hospital in Gaza City over the Christmas period.(...)