Palestinians have denounced the raid on the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound on Sunday by Israeli forces, which then hurled tear gas and rubber-coated steel shells at worshippers at Islam’s third holiest site in occupied East Jerusalem, as per Palestinian media.
Israeli police vehemently expatriated Muslim worshippers to make way for the Jewish settlers in one of the most complex venues in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, said Palestinian officials.
The Palestinian Authority (PA), which governs parts of the Israeli-occupied West Bank, in a statement said it held “the Israeli occupation government fully responsible for the escalations resulting from the Israeli incursion into the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex in occupied Jerusalem”.
The PA called the Jewish visits provocative and a “serious threat to “security and stability.”
Israeli police monitor and regulate Jewish visits to the compound, which houses the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock shrine – Islam’s holiest site after Mecca and Medina.
The site of the Al-Aqsa Mosque is known to Muslims as al-Haram al-Sharif, or the Noble Sanctuary, while Jews refer to the place of worship as the Temple Mount.
The incident took place two days ahead of Eid al-Adha, celebrated by Muslims, and on the eve of their annual Hajj pilgrimage. Hamas, the group that governs the Gaza Strip, called on the Palestinians to make their way to Jerusalem, and to remain in the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound until Eid al-Adha prayers.