Israeli rightists enter Aqsa compound under guard

Over 100 Israeli rightists on Sunday entered the Al-Aqsa compound in Jerusalem's Old City accompanied by dozens of Israeli police officers, witnesses said.

At least 180 Israelis, including 18 Rabbi's, entered the compound through the Moroccan Gate and toured the area under Israeli police guard.

Local Muslim worshipers and students protested the visit by shouting 'Allah Akbar', or 'God is Great', at the group.

Sheikh Najih Ibkeirat, the director of the Al-Asqa Mosque Compound, denounced the entry of Jewish rightists to the area and urged the Islamic world to prepare "a practical plan to stop the daily raids on Al-Aqsa."

"Extremists are trying to provoke Muslims and make up trouble in order to provide an excuse for Israeli forces to deny West Bankers entry to the mosque during Ramadan," Ibkeirat added.

Visits to the Al-Aqsa compound by Jewish extremists are intended to show local Palestinian Muslims that they can enter the area at will, even during the holy month of Ramadan, Ibkeirat said.

Israeli politicians, such as Likud's Moshe Feiglin, have in the past called for Jewish prayers at the compound, and control and access to the holy site is a particularly sensitive religious and political issue.

The Al-Aqsa compound, containing the mosque and the Dome of the Rock, is the third holiest site in Islam and abuts the site where Jews believe the ancient Second Temple stood.

Source: Ma'an News

All Rights Reserved 2013 : The Hashemite Fund For The Restoration Of Al-Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock