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Palestine: 1,100 Israeli settlers storm Al-Aqsa Mosque complex to celebrate Sukkot

3rd Oct 2023
Palestine: 1,100 Israeli settlers storm Al-Aqsa Mosque complex to celebrate Sukkot

By Zein Khalil

JERUSALEM (AA): More than 1,100 Israeli settlers on Monday forced their way into the flashpoint Al-Aqsa Mosque complex in occupied East Jerusalem to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Sukkot.

Meanwhile, on Monday morning, Israeli occupation police assaulted Palestinians, forcibly evacuated Muslim worshipers from the courtyards of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied Jerusalem, and abducted three Palestinians.

Media sources said that Israeli occupation police attacked Palestinian Muslim worshipers who were present at the Chain Gate (Bab al-Silsilah), on Monday morning.

Sukkot is a weeklong holiday, which started Sept. 29 and will continue until Oct. 6, ending a season of Jewish holidays that started by observing the Rosh Hashanah (New Year) holiday on Sept.15.

In a statement, the Jordan-run Islamic Waqf Department said that 1,142 Israeli settlers guarded by the Israeli police forced their way into the complex through the Al-Mughrabi Gate.

The settlers made tours of the mosque’s courtyards and attempted to perform “Talmudic rituals,” an official told Anadolu earlier on Monday requesting anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Roads leading to the Al-Aqsa Mosque witnessed attacks by the Israeli police on worshipers, preventing them from entering the mosque. Witnesses said that the police also detained two Palestinian women.

On Sunday, nearly 860 settlers had also stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque, according to the Islamic Waqf Department said.

Israeli police began allowing the settlers incursions into the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex in 2003, despite repeated condemnations from Palestinians.

Al-Aqsa Mosque is the world’s third-holiest site for Muslims. Jews call the area the “Temple Mount,” claiming it was the site of two Jewish temples in ancient times.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem, where Al-Aqsa is located, during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It annexed the entire city in 1980, a move never recognized by the international community.

*Writing by Mahmoud Barakat

[Photo: Some of the Israeli Jewish settlers raiding Al-Aqsa Mosque on Jewish holiday of Sukkot in Old City of Jerusalem on 1 10 23. Photo by Jerusalem Islamic Waqf/AA]

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Over 120 people attended a landmark conference on the media reporting of Islam and Muslims. It was held jointly by The Muslim News and Society of Editors in London on September 15.

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