JERUSALEM, Sunday, October 10, 2021 (WAFA) – Dozens of hardcore Israeli settlers, heavily guarded by Israeli police, broke into the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied Jerusalem today and performed rituals, according to witnesses.
They said that the fanatic settlers entered the holy compound in groups since early morning and performed rituals and provocative tours through the Islamic holy site.
Located in occupied Jerusalem, the Al-Aqsa Mosque is the third holiest site for Muslims. It was also Islam’s first Qibla, the direction towards which Muslims must turn to pray, before that was changed to Mecca, in Saudi Arabia.
In a landmark decision on Wednesday, an Israeli judge ruled that silent prayers by Jewish worshippers at al-Aqsa mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem were not a “criminal act”, stoking Palestinian fears of Jewish encroachment over Jerusalem’s holiest site.
The ruling came after a case was brought forward by Rabbi Aryeh Lippo contesting a ban imposed by the police on his visits and prayers at the compound.
Jordan, which has managed the Jerusalem Islamic Waqf since 1948, condemned the decision, stressing the Waqf held the sole legal authority to administer the affairs of al-Aqsa.
Settler incursions into the holy mosque compound coupled with the systematic takeover of church property in Jerusalem are perceived as part of a plan to transform a multi-religious and multi-cultural city into a "reunified" Jewish city under the exclusive control and sovereignty of the occupying state of Israel.
Israel captured East Jerusalem, where Al-Aqsa Mosque is located, during the Six-Day War in 1967 in a move never recognized by the international community.