JERUSALEM, Sunday, May 08, 2022 (WAFA) – Scores of Israeli settlers escorted by Israeli police broke into the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied Jerusalem earlier this morning and performed rituals across its courtyards, according to witnesses.
WAFA correspondent said scores of Israeli settlers entered the holy site in groups and performed rituals and Talmudic prayers there under the protection of Israeli police officers.
Palestinians and Muslim worshipers were denied access into the holy site by Israeli police during the presence of the Israeli settlers, she added.
The latest development comes after nearly month-long tensions fueled by increased presence by hardcore Israeli settlers inside the holy site during the past Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
Israeli far-right activists have repeatedly pushed for an increased presence by Israeli settlers at Al-Aqsa, despite a joint guardianship agreement between Israel and Jordan that bans the entry of Jewish settlers to the holy site.
Jerusalem's Islamic Waqf has repeatedly described the settlers' tours as "provocative", and said that Palestinian worshippers and guards at Al-Aqsa feel uncomfortable with the presence of Israeli police and settlers touring the Islamic holy site.
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.