Armenians in Israel & Palestine

This Google Map shows the Armenian Quarter of the old walled city of Jerusalem and other sites of Armenian settlement and interest across Israel and Palestine.

The sites within and around Jerusalem, including Gethsemane and Mount of Olives, are of course well known, as is the Armenian Apostolic Church’s role in the custodianship of such holy sites as the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.

Less well known are the small Armenian communities, most dating back to the aftermath of the 1915 Armenian Genocide, when Armenians were marched and fled south to Palestine as well as Syria, leading to the establishment of settlements in, for example, Jordan and Lebanon. The Israeli State tends to regard and treat the Armenian minority as if they were Palestinian. This is witnessed by the unrelenting encroachment upon the Armenian Quarter in Jerusalem but also by the compulsory purchase of Armenian-owned land in Bethlehem, for instance (the Baron Der Orchard there was sacrificed to the Security Wall).

A little known Genocide survivor Armenian settlement was that at Sheik Brak, just inland near the town of Atlit, south of Haifa. This was effectively a refugee village without facilities which was never permitted to develop and eventually was abandoned. Today it is returning to nature, and there are a few remains of buildings and mid-C20th headstones amid the scrub and trees.