By JT – Jul 22,2018 – JORDAN TIMES
A Jerusalem awqaf official speaks on the phone as Israeli settlers storm Al Haram Al Sharif/Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem on Sunday (Anadolu Agency photo)
AMMAN — The government on Sunday strongly condemned the Israeli violations and provocations at Al Aqsa Mosque / Al Haram Al Sharif compound.
The reaction came as more than 1,000 Israeli settlers on Sunday forced their way into East Jerusalem’s flashpoint Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, according to a Palestinian official, cited by Anadolu Agency.
Minister of State for Media Affairs Jumana Ghunaimat denounced in a statement the provocative break-ins of extremists and settlers that took place earlier in the day into the compound’s courts under the protection of the occupation forces.
She said such acts violate the sanctity of the holy place and provoke the sentiments of worshippers and Muslims all over the world, and constitute a violation of Israel’s obligations as the occupying power under international and humanitarian laws, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.
She also called on Israel to respect the historical and legal status of Al Aqsa Mosque and to respect the legitimate administration of the mosque, represented by the Jerusalem Awqaf Department, which is affiliated with Jordan’s Awqaf and Islamic Affairs.
Ghunaimat noted that the Jordanian embassy in Tel Aviv presented a diplomatic memo to the Israeli Foreign Ministry in the morning, expressing the Kingdom’s strong condemnation of the violations and called for an immediate halt to such practices.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Firas Al Dibis, an awqaf official, said Israeli forces stormed the compound before the settlers and carried out protective sweeps and searches.
According to Dibis, the occupation forces denied access to Najeh Bakirat, a scholar at the department, and allowed Muslim worshippers inside the mosque after seizing their IDs.
On Thursday, the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) passed a controversial law that recognises Israel as the “nation-state of the Jewish people”.
Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It annexed the entire city in 1980, claiming it as the capital of Israel — a move never recognised by the international community.