Palestinian president to seek UN Security Council over Al-Aqsa Mosque storming

MENA , Tuesday 3 Jan 2023

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said he would task the Palestinian mission to the United Nations to seek a UN Security Council condemnation over the storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Mahmoud Abbas
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, center, attends a Christmas midnight Mass in the Church of the Nativity in the West Bank town of Bethlehem Sunday, Dec. 25, 2022. (Photo: AP)

The mission will be tasked with taking immediate actions to stop such aggressions against Islam's third holiest site by Israeli government officials and extremists, he added.

Abbas underlined the need to take an international stance to put an end to such Israeli violations of holly worshiping places.

Israeli far-right minister Itamar Ben-Gvir’s barged his way into Al-Aqsa Mosque's courtyards in the early morning hours, a move that bounds to inflame tensions.

A video posted on social media showed Ben-Gvir touring the courtyards with a heavy police escort.

This is not the first time that Ben-Gvir has stormed Al-Aqsa. In May last year, accompanied by his wife and son, Ben-Gvir posted a picture calling for the destruction of the site to "establish a synagogue on the mountain".

Since Israel occupied the place following the 1967 war, Jewish prayer at the site has been forbidden, though far-right settlers such as Ben-Gvir (some of whom want to demolish Al Aqsa and replace it with a third Jewish temple) have frequently prayed there under strict security in recent years.

When former Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon made a similar trip to the site in 2000, it sparked the Second Palestinian Intifada (uprising).

The Al-Aqsa Mosque compound houses both the Dome of the Rock and Al Aqsa mosque and is considered the third holiest site in Islam.

Al Aqsa is located in East Jerusalem, a part of the internationally recognized Palestinian territories that have been occupied by the Israeli military since 1967.

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