Israeli settlers and intelligence officers, on Sunday morning, forced their way into al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem, according to local sources.

Witnesses told WAFA that a group of hard-line Israeli settlers accompanied by intelligence officers broke into the Islamic holy site. There were no reports of clashes between the entering settlers and worshipers.

The site has witnessed violent clashes in recent months, between Palestinians and Israeli police, most frequently due to provocative visits by Jewish extremists who believe the mosque should be destroyed and replaced with a Jewish temple.

The site is the third holiest place for Muslims, and has since 1967 been the center of the ongoing Palestinian-Israeli conflict. While it is widely known as Al-Aqsa Mosque, Jews refer to the site as the “Temple Mount” and believe it was the site of two Jewish temples destroyed in ancient times.

Palestinians worry that, if Jewish visitors were allowed to pray in the mosque, it would eventually lead to a permanent change which will result in full Israeli control and ban on Muslim prayer.

Despite the fact that the site is the location of al-Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock, two of the most holy destinations for Muslims, hundreds of Jewish extremists regularly attempt to legalize prayer at the compound, a move that will “inevitably” trigger Palestinians, said Israeli police.

In related news, participants at a workshop held at the Professional Associations Complex in Amman, Jordan, on Saturday night, condemned the silence of the world regarding Israeli violations against mosque.

They also warned of the danger of Judaization plans and of the Israeli daily aggressions.

Participants stressed, at a seminar on the 47th anniversary of Al-Aqsa burning, that the Israeli occupation violates the international legitimacy resolutions and commits the most heinous crimes against the Palestinian people in Jerusalem and all the occupied Arab territories.

According to Al Ray Palestinian Media Agency, they expressed their condemnation of the crime of burning of Al-Aqsa, as a step towards building the alleged “3rd Temple”, noting that it is a crime of the worst attacks committed against the mosque.

Taher Masri, former Prime Minister said that this incident raise the danger in the Arab and Islamic memory, and remind us that the Israeli occupation insist to proceed with the approach of destroying Islamic and Christian features.

(Photo: PNN archive)

Related interest — 08/15/16 Israeli Media: Preparations for Construction of 3rd Temple to Begin