The Israeli police in the city of Jerusalem have released Shikh Raed Salah, the leader of the Islamic movement inside the green line, on Thursday morning while controversial demolition near the Aqsa mosque is underway.According to media sources the police released Salah after issuing an order which states that he is not allowed in the old city of Jerusalem. Salah was arrested on Wednesday midday for protesting near the site of the controversial demolition at the bridge to the Mugrabi (Moroccan) Gate, in the old city of Jerusalem.

According to Palestinian media, the Israeli police installed more checkpoints around and in the Old City and assaulted and arrested tens of Palestinian civillians on Thursday.

Israeli police restricted access to the Al Aqsa Mosque in the Old City of Jerusalem for the third consecutive day, allowing only Muslim men over the age of 45 with Israeli identity cards and Muslim women to enter the Mosque compound.

The already tight restrictions were strengthened on Sunday, then again on Tuesday morning before Israeli bulldozers started demolishing the bridge to the Mugrabi Gate, one of the main entrances to the Al Aqsa Mosque.

On Monday the ‘City of Peoples’ organization and city council member Peppe Alalo, sent an urgent letter to the Attorney General Menachem Mazuz stating that the illegality of the excavation was well known by municipal bodies. However, this outcry was ignored. The Israeli government had recently decided to demolish the bridge, citing the need to build a road for Jewish settlers. Ehud Olmert also recently granted permission for a synagogue to be built only 40-50 meters away from the al-Aqsa mosque.