JERUSALEM, July 19, 2017 (WAFA) – Dozens of Palestinian worshippers Wednesday clashed with Israeli police outside Al-Aqsa Mosque following the noon prayer, according to witnesses.
They said police attacked the worshippers at the end of the prayer held outside Lions’ Gate where people have been holding prayers five times a day, as required by Islam.
Police used clubs and tear gas to disperse the worshippers. A number of people suffered from gas inhalation and beating and were treated on location. Police arrested two Palestinians.
Worshippers have been holding the prayers outside Al-Aqsa Mosque compound since Sunday after Israel erected metal detectors at the gates to the compound and demanded that people had to go through them first before entering the compound. Muslim leaders have rejected this new measure and vowed to fight it. They also called on people not to enter Al-Aqsa going through the metal detectors.
Meanwhile, Jerusalem’s Muslim religious leaders called after a meeting on Wednesday on Palestinians to hold the Friday prayer in areas as close as possible to Al-Aqsa Mosque.
The Waqf department, which is in charge of Al-Aqsa Mosque, called on mosques in East Jerusalem not to hold this coming Friday prayers in their mosques and to direct people to go and hold the prayer at the nearest point to Al-Aqsa Mosque in a show of defiance of the Israeli measures and support for Al-Aqsa Mosque.