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Set in undoubtedly one of the most beautiful parts
of Palestine, the historic city of Beit Sahour lies to the east of
Bethlehem and south-east of Jerusalem. The origins of the name Beit
Sahour (the house of vigilance) reputedly stems from the Canaanite
words "Beit" meaning place, and "Sahour" meaning night watch, which
reflected the importance of the area for shepherds. The land provided
their flocks with good grazing during the day and safety in the
numerous caves at night.
The area is full of historical and biblical sites of significance. Ruins from Roman, Byzantine, Islamic and Crusader times can be found throughout the area. In addition, there are many sites of special importance to followers of the three monotheistic religions, to whom this land is sacred.
Beit Sahour is a model of cooperation and brotherhood between Christians and Muslims. Throughout the troubled and turbulent history of our land, the people of Beit Sahour have always stood firm as a united community. Today, Beit Sahour is home to some 14,500 residents, 80% Christian and 20% Muslim.
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