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Israeli Authorities Re-Impose Control over Gate of Mercy

Israeli Authorities Re-Impose Control over Gate of Mercy

Monday, 15 July, 2019 - 08:45
Israeli border police officers stand guard at an entrance door leading to the compound housing al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem's Old City March 12, 2019. REUTERS/Ammar Awad
Tel Aviv - Asharq Al-Awsat
A few hours after Israeli police attacked the Gate of Mercy, emptying its offices to prove its sovereignty of the Temple Mount, dozens of settlers stormed on Sunday the courtyards of Al-Aqsa Mosque, under tight security measures by the Israeli occupation forces.
 
Police forces also imposed strict measures on the Palestinians’ entry into the mosque. Firas Debs, public relations and media official of the Islamic Waqf Department, said that around 79 settlers, accompanied by six members of Israeli intelligence, entered Al-Aqsa Mosque on Sunday morning, wandering in its yards under the protection of the Israeli security.
 
The Gate of Mercy, or Golden Gate, was sealed by Israeli authorities in 2003. Last February, the Waqf reopened the site and Palestinian worshipers have begun to use it as a mosque, despite Israeli attempts to keep the area sealed.
 
Before dawn prayers on Sunday, Israeli police and border guards raided the Gate of Mercy, emptied its contents and smashed the wooden barriers erected by the Awqaf Department.

International Law Professor Hanna Issa condemned the arbitrary Israeli measures in occupied Jerusalem against historic, religious and cultural sites.
 
In a statement issued by The Islamic-Christian Committee to Defend Jerusalem and Holy Sites, Issa considered these actions a flagrant violation of the rules of international law and the resolutions of international legitimacy, in particular General Assembly Resolution 36/147 of December 16, 1981, which condemned Israeli policies and practices against cultural, religious and historic properties in Jerusalem, including excavations, looting and alterations of natural land and historic, cultural and religious sites.

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