The New Year is off to a peaceful start in Bethlehem. Christians from all over the world gathered at the West Bank town for a new year’s mass and celebration.
The New Year’s mass took place on Thursday at the Church of the Nativity in the West Bank town of Bethlehem.
[Chase, American Tourist]: (Male)
"It is great, it is beautiful, beautiful country, beautiful time to be here, and defiantly significant city in Christianity."
Many of the tourists arrived at the West Bank for Christmas festivities last week, and stayed over for New Year's mass.
One tourist said that he would pray for peace in the region.
[Father Michel Angelo Priotto, Italian Tourist]: (Male)
"We pray for not only political peace, but the real peace, so that the two people, the Jewish people and the Arabic people could stay together in this land."
Tourism has picked up in the past few years after collapsing during the violent uprising which erupted in 2000.