More than 250 settlers stormed the yards of Al-Aqsa Mosque on Tuesday, under strict security measures by the Israeli occupation forces. The raid came in response to calls by Jewish organizations to intensify “visits” to the place in celebration of the Jewish Throne Day.
The Jerusalem Islamic Waqf said that the settlers entered through the Mughrabi Gate and carried out “provocative tours” in the mosque, while listening to explanations about the “alleged temple” which the Jews say was built there.
The number of settlers entering the mosque is expected to increase in the coming days. Israeli ministers and officials participated in some of these incursions, creating further tension with the Palestinians.
The large-scale raid on Tuesday came a day after Palestine and Jordan warned against dragging the region into a “religious war” if Aqsa continued to be targeted.
In this context, Ramallah and Amman condemned the statements of the Israeli Minister of Public Security, Gilad Ardan, who called for the Jews to be allowed to pray freely in the Aqsa Mosque.
The Mosque is run by hundreds of Jordanian employees of the Jordanian Islamic Waqf, but Israel allows Jews to visit the place contrary to the Waqf’s will.
Member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and Head of the Jerusalem Affairs Department Adnan al-Husseini warned of the repercussions of the “fierce attacks carried out by the settlers, under the protection of the Israeli occupation authorities, on the Aqsa Mosque.”
Husseini said in a press statement that developments at the Aqsa “call for more resolve and presence to protect the place, and preserve its sanctity.”
Jordan’s Parliament Speaker Atef Tarawneh said on Tuesday that the Israeli occupation violated all principles of international law and resolutions of international legitimacy.
Addressing the 141st meeting of the Inter-Parliamentary Union held in Belgrade, he said: “We in Jordan, where we are bound by a peace treaty with the Israeli occupation government, today see that this peace is under threat, in light of the blatant violation of its provisions, especially with the issue of Jerusalem.”