Tensions run high as Israel closes Masjid Al-Aqsa gate

A new round of tensions erupted in Masjid Al-Aqsa this week as occupying Israeli forces closed the Al-Rahma gate with locks and iron chains on Sunday night.

The Israeli move came to prevent the Waqf Department, which is in charge of Muslim property in occupied Jerusalem, including Masjid Al-Aqsa, from using it.

On Monday, violent clashes broke out between Muslim worshippers and Israeli forces amid heavy fire of teargas bombs.

Several Palestinians were injured and reportedly arrested.

The angry protesters succeeded to reopen the metal gate before being re-closed by occupying Israeli soldiers who forced Muslim worshippers to leave the compound and imposed a complete closure on the holy shrine.

The Islamic Waqf strongly condemned the Israeli attack, considering it a flagrant violation to the sanctity of the Islamic holy site, calling for putting an end to Israel’s escalated provocations at Masjid Al-Aqsa.

For its part, the Jordanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs denounced “in the strongest possible terms” the Israeli assault on worshippers, and called for lifting the newly-imposed restrictions on their entry to the mosque.

The ministry considered the Israeli aggression as a “violation of the historical and legal status quo and Israel’s obligations under the international law and the international humanitarian law”, and held it fully responsible for the safety of the holy mosque.

Israeli occupying forces have repeatedly prevented Muslim worshippers from praying at the Masjid Al-Aqsa compound under baseless pretexts while Jewish settlers are allowed full access.

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