Security officers at Al Aqsa Mosque stated that over 200 extremist Israeli settlers entered the compound in occupied East Jerusalem, early Tuesday, under protection of armed escort.According to Ma’an News Agency, Israel maintains a compromise with the Islamic trust which controls the compound to restrict the mosque for Muslim prayers, due to the sensitive nature of the area.
Israeli forces, however, regularly escort Jewish visitors to the site, often leading to violent confrontations with Palestinian devotees.
Last Sunday, when the mosque was attacked and worshippers were denied access, soldiers threw teargas bombs and caused the injury of 15 worshippers.
For Muslims, the mosque represents the world’s third holiest site, where the prophet Mohammed was transported from the Sacred Mosque in Mecca to Al Aqsa during the Night Journey.
Jews refer to the area as the ‘Temple Mount’, as for them it was once the site of two prominent Jewish temples, in ancient times.
According to the PNN, Israeli police arrested one settler, today, who threw himself on the ground, shouting and protesting ‘why the mosque has not been demolished yet’, to set the reclaimed temple mount on it.
See 08/21/14 imemc.org/article/68902 for further background info.