Egypt calls on Israel to prevent escalation at Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem

Ahram Online , Wednesday 19 Jul 2017

Earlier this week, Israel installed metal detectors and cameras at the entrance to the Haram Al-Sharif Compound, prompting protests from Palestinians

Palestinians stand in front of Israeli police officers and newly installed metal detectors at an entrance to Al-Aqsa Mosque (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt warned Israel on Wednesday of the dangerous repercussions that could result from Tel Aviv's escalating security measures at Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, which have left many Palestinians injured and endangered the life of the mosque's Imam Ekrima Sabria, a foreign ministry statement read.

Earlier this week, Israel closed the mosque to Palestinians for Friday prayers for the first time since Israel occupied Jerusalem in 1967 and  installed metal detectors and cameras at the entrance to the Haram Al-Sharif Compound following the killing of two policemen at the site.

Palestinians then boycotted the Muslim holy compound for three days, in condemnation of the new security measures at the gates, preferring to pray outside the mosque in order not to pass through the metal detectors.

Confrontations and scuffles have erupted between Israeli occupation forces and Palestinians camping outside the holy site, leaving tens of Palestinians injured by rubber bullets and tear gas.

The Egyptian statement also called on Israel to stop the violence, respect the Palestinians' right to worship safely and freely, and not to take actions that could lead to further escalation and weaken the chances of reaching a peaceful and just settlement.

Egypt has repeatedly called for a fair and comprehensive solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict that guarantees the rights of Palestinians to have their own independent state.

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