JERUSALEM, August 18, 2018 (WAFA) – Israeli police reopened the gates to Al-Aqsa Mosque, also known as Al-Haram Al-Sharif or Holy Sanctuary, compound in Jerusalem’s Old City early Saturday to allow resumption of worship in Islam’s third holiest sites, officials of the Waqf department, which is in charge of the Mosque, said.
Police forced all people who were inside the compound on holy Friday to leave the compound and closed its gates in the afternoon after an attempted stabbing attack in the Old City of Jerusalem but outside the compound during which a 30-year-old Palestinian resident of Umm Al-Fahem, a city inside Israel, was shot dead by policemen after an alleged stabbing attack that did not cause any injury among the police.
The Muslim Waqf department, the Palestinian Authority and Jordan, the custodian over the Muslim holy sites in occupied East Jerusalem, strongly protested police interference in Muslim affairs and banning free worship and demanded an immediate end to closing the holy site for Muslim worshippers.
Hundreds of people held the Friday evening and night prayers outside the closed gates of the walled-in compound in a protest move, reminiscent of similar previous acts when Israel closed the compound for worship, amidst calls by the clergy on people to hold the five daily prayers outside the gates and warning of an escalation in the situation unless Israel reopens it.
Muslim official said the gates to compound were opened early Saturday that allowed worshippers to hold the dawn prayer inside it.