Ramallah: In a rare show of unity, rivals Fatah and Hamas along with Palestinians from all walks of life united in mourning the Catholic bishop Hilarion Capucci who was famous for his lifetime support of Palestinians who described him as the martyr for Jerusalem.

Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas described former archbishop Capucci as a great and brave fighter.

In 2013, Abbas presented Capucci with a medal of honour in Rome for his longtime support of the Palestinian people and their cause.

“We mourn the death of one of the most notable fighters and leaders of the Arab nation. Capucci has dedicated his entire life and sincerely defended the Palestinian just cause,” said Fatah in a statement. “The Palestinian cause has lost a great figure who never hesitated to serve the Palestinian people.”

Hamas mourned Capucci’s death and praised him for a life devoted to defending the Palestinian people and their just cause. Hamas described Capucci as the Patriarch of Jerusalem, who passed away in exile by Israel which accused and imprisoned him on charges of smuggling weapons to Palestinian fighters.

“Capucci’s legacy will stand as an example to all of us to persist on our pursuit of liberty and freedom,” said Ezzat Al Rashq, a Hamas leader in a statement. “As Capucci passes away from this life, those of us who are left behind will remember Capucci’s bold attitudes which occupy a place in the memory of the Palestinian nation.”