Jordan condemns Ben-Gvir's storming of Al-Aqsa
Dozens of Israeli settlers were led by far-right Israeli minister Itamar Ben-Gvir into Al-Aqsa in occupied Al-Quds.
Jordan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriate Affairs has denounced the incursion of Israeli settlers led by Israeli Police Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir that broke into the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied Al-Quds under heavy police protection.
Ben-Gvir stormed Al-Aqsa Mosque in January, protected by a large number of Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF).
Following Ben-Gvir’s incursion into the holy site, more groups of Israeli settlers were allowed into the compound, staying there for some time.
The Islamic Waqf, in charge of the daily affairs of the holy site, has repeatedly described the settlers' presence in Al-Aqsa Mosque as provocative, saying that Palestinian worshippers and guards at Al-Aqsa feel uncomfortable with the presence of Israeli police and settlers touring the Islamic holy site.
On Thursday, groups of Israeli occupation settlers stormed the courtyards of Al-Aqsa Mosque ahead of the provocative Flag March scheduled for that day.
The storming came at a time when the occupation forces tightened their measures in Al-Quds in preparations for the Flag March, and prevented Palestinians from entering Al-Aqsa Mosque to perform the morning prayers.
Ambassador Sinan Al-Majali, the spokesman for the Jordanian Foreign Ministry, called Ben-Gvir’s incursion into Al-Aqsa Mosque “a provocative, condemned, dangerous and unacceptable escalation, and represents a flagrant violation of international law, and of the historical and legal status quo in Jerusalem and its holy sites.”
He warned that the ongoing Israeli attacks on Islamic and Christian holy sites in Al-Quds, combined with unilateral settlement expansion and daily incursions into Palestinian towns and villages, risk further escalation, which the international community must work to prevent.
The Ambassador stressed that “the Al-Aqsa Mosque, with its entire area of 144 dunums, is a pure place of worship for Muslims, and that the Jerusalem Awqaf and Al-Aqsa Mosque Affairs Department affiliated with the Jordanian Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs is the legitimate authority with exclusive jurisdiction over all the affairs of Al-Aqsa Mosque, including deciding who can be there.”
Al-Majali urged Israel, the occupying authority, to halt all practices and abuses in the Al-Aqsa Mosque, as well as any efforts intended at altering the current historical and legal status quo at the holy site, immediately.
🔴 #عاجل|| مجموعات المستوطنين تبدأ باقتحام المسجد الأقصى المبارك بحماية من قوات الاحتلال. pic.twitter.com/dYN5z29FCI— أدهم أبو سلمية #غزة 🇵🇸 (@adham922) May 18, 2023
Ben-Gvir sets West Bank 'operation' as a condition for cabinet return
On May 7, Israeli media reported that Ben-Gvir had set demands for Israeli Occupation Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in exchange for his return to attend government meetings and Knesset sessions.
Michael Shemesh, a political affairs correspondent for Israeli channel KAN, pointed out that Ben-Gvir's first demand is "a military operation" in the occupied West Bank as a condition for his return to the government and the Knesset.
The Israeli correspondent said Ben-Gvir also called for tightening the noose on Palestinian prisoners and taking more decisive measures in some parts of the judicial overhaul.
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