Thousands of people make the annual pilgrimage to Manger Square to attend the Christian service. It is held in the wake of deadly attacks in the West Bank. Several people were killed on Christmas Eve in the ongoing violence.
The arrival of Greek Patriarch Theophilos III in Bethlehem was the center of a protest against church land sales to Jewish groups. Some townships had called for a boycott of the midnight mass attended by the patriarch.
Recent violence sparked by US President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital has put a damper on Christmas celebrations in Bethlehem. Still, scores of people took part in Christmas Eve festivities.
Berlin is in turmoil. DW columnist Gero Schliess fears that the terror attack on the Breitscheidplatz Christmas market and the recent anti-Semitic protests have had a destructive impact on the city.
Pope Francis has led Mass for thousands of Catholics in Cairo as part of his historic visit to Muslim-majority Egypt. Amidst heavy security, Francis called for tolerance following attacks by Islamic militants.
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