The Islamic Jerusalem Endowments (Waqf) council, in a press statement, called on Israeli authorities to immediately halt all work carried out at Al-Aqsa Mosque and to remove all equipment installed on the walls of the mosque.

A group of Israeli workers, today, resumed work on the southern wall of Al-Aqsa Mosque in the Umayyad palaces area, alleging undergoing restoration works on the mosque.

The council stressed that the Waqf is the sole institution responsible for administrating the affairs of Al-Aqsa Mosque, including maintenance of the inside and outside walls of the mosque.

It warned against the continuation of such actions and violations against the mosque, with its total area of 144-dunams, stressing that it is a place of worship and prayer for Muslims only under the guardianship of Jordanian King Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein.

It also warned against the continuation of underground excavations in the vicinity of the Al-Aqsa mosque, particularly in the Umayyad palaces area.

Waqf also called on the Israeli authorities to return the historical rocks it stole in order to place them back at the western mosque’s wall.

WAFA correspondence further reports tat Israeli authorities continue, for the third consecutive week, to ban the cleric of the mosque, Ismail Nawahdeh, from entering Jerusalem.

Islamic Waqf lawyer, Khaldoun Najm, said that they are still awaiting a response from the Israeli occupation regarding the cancellation of the ban imposed on the preacher, noting that the Israeli intelligence did not provide any reason for the ban and have also banned him from crossing its checkpoints.

Nawahdeh was detained three weeks ago, at Qalandia Israeli military checkpoint, while on his way to Jerusalem, under the pretext of inciting against the Israeli occupation during Friday sermons (Khutba).