Silver Lining

Food for thought

Tag Archives: Al Aqsa mosque

Zionists target al-Aqsa Mosque, the heart of Islam

(Al Quds, Palestine-file photo)

by Catherine Shakdam, source

As the world is busy debating whether Syrian President Bashar al-Assad did indeed use chemical weapons against its own people or if he is instead the victim of a somber plot hatched by foreign powers to “legitimize” their invasion of yet another Muslim country, Israel is calculatingly moving against Islam’s beating heart, the al-Aqsa Mosque in al-Quds (Jerusalem).

While Muslims worldwide are dissecting and assessing their political affiliations — pro or anti — the Zionist entity of Israel is using such engineered confusion to inconspicuously carry out an aggression against Islam of such magnitude that only a few have dared fathom it, let alone warned against it.

Israel is looking to build a temple on the ground of al-Aqsa Mosque, thus desecrating Islam’s third most sacred place after Mecca and Medina, thus sullying the very ground which the prophet of God, Mohammed (PBUH), walked upon, which the prophets of God before him walked upon and used to glorify Allah and His creation.

At a time when Muslims are fighting among each other, arguing over which school of thoughts — Sunni or Shiite — holds the greater truth or the greatest legitimacy, at a time when brothers have declared war on one another over religious semantic, the Zionists are closing the net on al-Quds, bent on claiming Palestine their own by erasing Islam from its landscape.

Just as Mecca has become a spiritual link to the divine, a place where worshipers come to purify their religion and their soul, al-Aqsa is in many ways Islam’s beating heart, the connection of one people to the long lineage of God’s prophets.

While Palestinians and scholars have for decades warned the world against such a plot to sever Muslims’ link to the sacred, most paid no heed to “such conspiracy”, shrugging under the rug such prophecies of gloom, preferring instead to believe that the world’s nations would never dare, for all their talks of justice, equality and tolerance, stand for such abominable sacrilege against one’s faith.

Looking back it would be foolish to believe that a nation which built the cornerstone of its state on the blood of thousands of Palestinians and erected its institutions on stolen Palestinian land could ever behave humanely before a people it despises above all.

Just as a tiger cannot change its stripes, the Jewish state will forever plot the destruction of Islam; believing otherwise is pure delusion.

Judaization of al-Quds

The Christian-Muslim Commission for support of Jerusalem and holy sites has announced last week it will lodge a complaint against Yishai – the Israeli organization which stands behind the planned destruction of al-Aqsa – before the UN institutions and the Human Rights Council.

However, since it has already been confirmed that Yishai obtained all the requisite authorizations and permits from Israeli state officials, the matter will in all likelihood be lost amid red tape, vetoed against by Israel’s powerful international lobby.

Dr Hanna Eisa, the Secretary General of the commission told the press that “Yishai has secretly obtained official permits for the construction in the third holiest site for Muslims.”

She told Gulf News last week, “This is a serious plan aimed at planting Jewish existence within the Muslim sacred area.”

And indeed, when completed, the new synagogue will sat in front of al-Marwani prayer area, thus preventing Muslims to congregate.

It is difficult to fathom just how Israel will ever pretend to justify such a move.

But more troubling yet, one should ponder over the security measures the Jewish state will put in place to guarantee the safety of its worshipers, and to preempt against expected outburst of violence on site.

The synagogue will undoubtedly lead to mass protests and potentially to clashes as crowds will feel so violated within their faith that they will feel no other alternative but to react.

Any form of violence will give Israel the justification it needs before the international community to violently and mercilessly crackdown on protesters, thus laying waste al-Aqsa’s last line of defense before its complete and utter annihilation.

Israel wants Muslims to find themselves behaving erratically; Israel wants to paint Islam as a religion which professes bloodshed and war as to continue to feed its propaganda and misinformation machine; it wants the world to stand in horror as Muslims trample under their feet the images of their enemies, never stopping to question whose weapon it was which fired first or whose blade it was which draw first blood.

Doomed if we do, doomed if we don’t, Muslims would have soon to learn that while alone they will walk against many, by standing together the world’ storms will break on their backs, never to defeat or weaken them.

Israel’s plan to Judaize al-Quds is over two decades old.

Since 1994 the Jewish government has systematically used its military to forcibly take over mosques and religious establishments to transform them into Synagogues, thus slowly erasing Islam presence from the Holy city.

Israel is not only committing a sacrilege against Islam, it seeks to eradicate Islam from Palestine to reclaim History as its own.

By destroying Islam, the Jews are looking to rewrite their past and forever pretend that they are the chosen people of God awaiting their Messiah.

By destroying Islam’s place of worships it is God’s Truth the state of Israel is trying to forever bury under the sand of Palestine.

Proofs of such a conspiracy are legion; for example, the Israeli army has been preventing Muslims from entering a mosque in the village of An-Nabi Samuel in the northwest of al-Quds on account that the site is being converted into a synagogue. In August, Tel Aviv announced it would turn Nabi Daud Mosque which is located southwest of al-Aqsa Mosque into yet another synagogue.

Media silence continues to cloud the affair, which in many ways raises some troubling questions over not only the integrity of the press but its independence.

As Voltaire – French writer and historian – once said, “To announce truths is an infallible receipt for being persecuted.”


Sheikh Salah warns of Israeli plan to turn museum in Aqsa Mosque to synagogue

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)– Sheikh Ra’ed Salah, the head of the Islamic Movement in the 1948 occupied lands, warned Friday of an Israeli plan to turn the museum of Islamic art in the Aqsa Mosque into a synagogue.

During the Friday Khutba (sermon), Sheikh Salah added that the Israeli occupation is also working on emptying the Aqsa Mosque from Palestinian leaders and worshipers through preventing them from entering it in order to take serious steps against it.

He also stressed that the Israeli occupation is seeking feverishly to Judaize all occupied Jerusalem and divide the Aqsa Mosque as a prelude to building the alleged temple on its ruins.

The Palestinian leader pointed to Israeli intentions to prevent Adhan (call to prayer) in all mosques of Jerusalem and the 1948 occupied lands including the Aqsa Mosque.

For its part, the UAE Al-Bayan newspaper criticized Friday the Arab silence towards the Israeli Judaization schemes in Jerusalem.

The newspaper said that Israel is carrying out unprecedented, systematic Judaization activities and seeking to achieve two goals, which are, to make a demographic change in favor of Jews and to sever the geographical relationship between the eastern part of Jerusalem and the West Bank.

It underlined that the level of Arab and Palestinian response towards these Zionist threats is not as it should be, while the Europeans took the initiative and called for curbing the Israeli encroachment in the holy city.

Israelis continue thier onslaught on Al Quds and the EU accuses them of annexing it ‎

Extremist Jewish groups call for closing Aqsa until release of Shalit

GAZA, (PIC) — Al-Aqsa foundation for endowment and heritage reported Thursday that fanatic Jewish groups released a document calling for closing the Aqsa Mosque until Palestinians release Gilad Shalit.

The document is aimed to collect the signatures of 10,000 Israeli settlers and demands the police to close the holy Mosque to pressure the Palestinian resistance to release Shalit.

“We, the undersigned, demand the Israeli police to close the temple mount (Aqsa Mosque) in the face of Muslims until the release of Gilad Shalit without preconditions,” the document reads.

“The Arabs will be afraid of losing the Mosque and there will be international pressure from all Muslims in the world for the release of Gilad; we have a strong pressure card and Arabs will not give up the Aqsa Mosque,” the document added.

For his part, sheikh Saleh Lutfi, the spokesman for the Islamic Movement in the 1948 occupied lands, condemned this document, saying it reflects the sick minds of these Jewish groups.

Lutfi added that there is no limit to the arrogant and provocative attitude of such extremist Jewish groups which became a thorn in the side of Israeli institutions.

Sheikh Sabri Barred From Al Aqsa Mosque For Six Months

by Saed Bannoura – IMEMC & Agencies

The Israeli Authorities in Jerusalem handed Sheikh Ekrima Sabri, head of the Higher Islamic Committee in Jerusalem, a restriction order preventing him from entering the Al Aqsa Mosque, in East Jerusalem, for six months.

Sheikh Sabri is also the Khatib of the Al Aqsa Mosque.

The Sheikh was handed the new order on Wednesday directly after he returned to the country after conducting pilgrimage in Mecca.

He was ordered to head to the Police Station in the city to officially receive the order, but his lawyer, Khalid Zabarqa, demanded the police to grant him more time as he needs to rest following extended hours of travel.

The police rejected the request and threatened to arrest the Sheikh which forced him to go to the Al Maskobiyya interrogation center to receive the order.

Preventing Palestinian Muslims and Christians from entering the holy places in Jerusalem is an illegal act that violations the International Law and the freedom of religion.

EU: “Israel” illegally annexing Al-Quds ‎

Fri, 04 Dec 2009, Press TV

The European Union accuses Israel of actively pursuing the annexation of East Jerusalem Al-Quds, undermining hopes for peace with Palestinians.

Diplomats in Brussels say an EU meeting on Monday is to likely to discuss the stalled Middle East peace process, which is continuously being obstructed by Israel.

East Jerusalem Al-Quds has been seen for years as the prospective capital of a future Palestinian state. This is one of the most sensitive issues in the Middle East peace talks, which have been suspended for almost a year.

The annual report drafted by the EU heads of missions in Jerusalem Al-Quds has condemned Israel’s policy of expanding illegal settlements and demolishing Palestinian homes and eviction orders in 2009.

As a result, over 600 Palestinian-owned structures have been demolished since the year 2000, it said.

This Israeli policy, by practical means, is weakening the Palestinian community in the West Bank, “impeding Palestinian urban developments and ultimately separating East Jerusalem Al-Quds from the rest of the West Bank,” the report said.

Israel occupied and annexed East Jerusalem Al-Quds in 1967 and considers it its “eternal indivisible capital” in a move never recognized by the international community.

The EU report also said that Israel’s policies in East Jerusalem Al-Quds “are undermining prospects for a Palestinian capital in East Jerusalem Al-Quds and incrementally render a sustainable two-state solution unfeasible.”

The 14-page report said that Israel’s policy in East Jerusalem Al-Quds is “an integral part of a broader Israeli strategy.”

“Israel’s” Right-Wing Plans Against Al-Aqsa

by Hasan Idelbi-Al Bayan newspaper-UAE

A Religious Struggle?

By Amr Taha, IOL

Despite international denunciation of the Israeli attempts to desecrate Al-Aqsa Mosque, Israel obstinately continues its policy of nudging extremist Jewish religious groups, albeit covertly, toward Al-Aqsa, the third holiest Mosque in Islam.

On October 24, the Israeli police stormed Al-Aqsa Mosque and opened fires against Muslim worshippers who gathered inside the mosque to ward off one of the Israeli right-wing groups’ frequent attempts of storming the Mosque and performing Jewish rituals by force inside.

“The occupation forces used tear gas, stun guns, and rubber bullets inside Al-Aqsa Mosque to force Muslim prayers outside,” said Hashim Yakoub, the media coordinator of Al-Quds International Institution.

“This is unprecedented. It is the first time that Israel cut electricity lines to prevent (adhan) (calling for prayer) and to prevent worshippers from saying Allah is Great (takbir),”Yakoub added.

International law guarantees that Muslims have full access to Al-Aqsa anytime. Israel, accordingly, is intentionally violating international law in Al-Quds (Jerusalem).

“The record of Israeli security actions with respect to [Palestinian cities] and Al-Aqsa has demonstrated that [Israel] has violated international law on a number of occasions by disproportionate use of force against worshippers, hindrance of access to the sites, and the building of Jewish civilian settlements around Al-Aqsa,” Dr. Michael Lynk, a professor of international law at the University of Western Ontario; Canada, told (IOL).

“Palestinians and Muslims are allowed to have full access to their places of worship under international law, which could only be temporarily suspended in cases of important security concerns,” Dr. Lynk continued.

Al-Aqsa Partition Plan

With an Israeli right-wing government in power, Israel does not only accelerate its project of judaizing Al-Quds, but also seeks to impose its control over Al-Aqsa in order to partition it between Muslims and Jews.

The current Israeli government is significantly a rightist, nationalist one composed of the Likud Party, chauvinistic Yisrael Beitenu, ultra-orthodox United Torah Judaism, extremist Shas, the national-orthodox Jewish Home, and surprisingly the leftist Labor Party, making it the most right-wing Israeli government ever in history.

In August and October 2008 and 2009, protected and cajoled by the Israeli police, ultra-orthodox and religious-nationalist groups frequently attempted to storm Al-Aqsa during Jewish religious fests.

The Israeli government is more brazenly obdurate in carrying out the Jewish project of partitioning Al-Aqsa Mosque as a preliminary step toward establishing the so-called “Third Temple” on the ruins of Al-Aqsa in Judea and Samara (the biblical name of the West Bank).

“May be that could be a project to partition Al-Aqsa. They [Israeli Jews] believe that the ‘Temple’ is under Al-Aqsa Mosque,” said Dr. Iyad Barghouthi, the general director of Ramallah Center of Human Rights Studies.

“This is unprecedented,” commented Kamal Al-Khateeb, the deputy head of the Islamic Movement (Northern Branch) inside Mandate Palestine, referring to the Israeli police storming and firing into Al-Aqsa.


Palestinians in particular and Muslims in general, have credible suspicions that Israel will divide Al-Aqsa in the fashion of Al-Haram Al-Ibrahimi (Cave of the Patriarchs), especially with a right-wing government always dreaming of establishing an exclusive Jewish state.

After Wye River Accords, Israel unilaterally embarked on gradually cutting parts of Al-Haram Al-Ibrahimi, allocating them to Jews.

Yet, with the repetition of such Jewish attempts to perform paryers inside Al-Aqsa, the gloomier prospect lies in the probability that Muslims all around the world could eventually get accustomed to the newly situation imposed on the ground.

Al-Khateeb fears that Israel could divide Al-Aqsa without strong, deterrent reaction from the Muslim world.

“The repetition of such attempts aims to tame the Arab and Muslim public opinion by gradually accustoming them to seeing frequent Jewish attempts of entering and praying inside Al-Aqsa,” said Al-Khateeb.

“Israel tries to create a de facto situation inside [Al-Aqsa] based on its tactic of gradually making Arabs and Muslims acquiesce to Jews praying inside Al-Aqsa,” he continued.

Al-Khateeb warns the Muslim world that Israel moves from imposing its political and military occupation of Al-Aqsa to impose its ‘exclusive sovereignty of worship’.

Comprehensive Juadization Scheme

The Israeli project to judaize Al-Quds goes in tandem with its attempts to take over Al-Aqsa.

“Both issues are complementary [for Israel],” Yakoub told IOL.”Dividing Al-Aqsa is a real plan,” he added.

However, Dr. Iyad Barghouthi thinks that although Israel try to practically control Al-Aqsa, may be Israeli actions could be interpreted as an attempt to divert the attention of the world public opinion away from the actual danger of judaizing Al-Quds.

“What is much more dangerous is that media outlets are diverting attention away from the unprecedented expansion of Israeli settlements in the West Bank,” said Dr. Barghouthi, stressing in this respect that “[attacking] Al-Aqsa is part of judaizing Al-Quds.”

Peace Now Movement states that today, more than 280,000 people live in 121 settlements all over the West Bank (not including Eastern Al-Quds).

In Al-Quds, Israel plans to expand the Ma’ale Adumim’s settlements/colonies at the expense of Eastern Al-Quds, aiming at tilting the demographic balance toward Jews.

“The Fourth Geneva convention and many UNSC resolutions, such as 446 and 465, define Jerusalem [Al-Quds] as an occupied territory under international law,” affirmed Dr.Lynk.

“This forbids any unilateral demographic changes to the occupied territories. The only security interest of the occupied power is to protect the occupied population, not to advance [the occupying power’s] interest [by making] demographic changes,” Dr. Lynk told IOL.

According to Al-Quds International Institution, there are plans for building additional 33,500 housing units in Eastern Al-Quds to accommodate 117,000 settlers — and 140,000 in the coming years — in Eastern Al-Quds.
According to the Israeli Peace Now Movement, the completion of the Israeli plan of building settlements in Arab neighborhoods, like Sheik Jarrah, Silwan, and the Mount of Olives, will change dramatically the map of Eastern Al-Quds and would prevent a permanent status agreement and a compromise about Al-Quds.

In parallel with judaizing Al-Quds, Israel now is building a 200-meter tunnel passing underneath the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa.

“Despite all excavation and tunnel work, Israel has failed to prove that the so-called ‘Temple Mount’ is beneath Al-Aqsa Mosque,” affirmed Al-Khateeb.

“Some Israeli scientists affirmed that they did not find any evidence of the existence of the ‘Temple’. Some religious Jewish groups believe that the Second Temple was built in Mount Gerizim close to Nablus in which some Jewish groups still dwell,” Al-Khateeb told IOL.

Rising Extremist Right Wing

However, the validity of the Israeli/Jewish claims to Al-Aqsa is not so much contested in Israel as long as they are employed by the Israeli government to halt peace process and to strengthen the clout of the right wing, not only in political apparatus, but also at various societal levels.

“As long as there is a right-wing government in Israel, what is always offered [to Palestinians] is only the sovereignty of people, not land,” Dr. Emad Gad, the Editor-in-Chief of Al-Ahram-published Israel Affairs (transliterated, Sh’oun Israeliya), told IOL.

“The best for the Israeli right wing is to freeze any negotiations or proposals for final solution, to accelerate the judaization of Al-Quds, and to impose facts on the ground,” continued Dr. Gad, emphasizing that “any right-wing Israeli government carries out major, serious steps against Al-Aqsa”.

More ominously, the so-called Israeli secular public opinion supports such actions carried out by right-wing groups and parties.

Like many contemporary analysts, Dr. Iyad Barghouthi affirms that all the Israeli society is tectonically moving towards the right. “Netanyahu and Lieberman are just in the center right of the political spectrum. All sections of the Israeli society are actually heading toward extremist right and fascism,” he said.

Therefore, there is a genuine link between the Israeli government and extremist Jewish groups.

“Israel gives political and security protection, and even coordinate, with these Jewish right-wing groups that have political affiliations toward many parties in the Knesset,” said Al-Khateeb.

In 1996, Netanyahu was the first Israeli Prime Minister to officially inaugurate a tunnel under Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Netanyahu has a long history of using Al-Quds and Al-Aqsa to destroy peace efforts by strengthening the right-wing project of building a “Jewish state” at the expense of Palestinian lands.

Peace Now states that immediately after Netanyahu returned from peace negotiations at the Wye Plantation in 1998, he took the decision to build Har Homa settlement, and, more famously, in 1996, he opened the Hasmonean Tunnel under the Muslim Quarter of the Old City.

“[Netanyahu] now ambitiously tries to lay the foundations of the so-called ‘Third Temple Mount’,” said Al-Khateeb.

“We witness the ‘Israeli official adoption’ of judaizing Al-Aqsa. Netanyahu is the only Israeli Prime Minister to call for the right of Jews to pray inside Al-Aqsa,” contended Yakoub.

Israeli actions against Al-Aqsa and Al-Quds are far from political cost-benefit considerations with respect to the domestic Israeli scene. They are based on per se right-wing ideological beliefs.

Dr. Emad Gad does not think that Netanyahu’s actions are reminiscent of Sharon’s abominable storming of Al-Aqsa in 2000 when Sharon used the card of religion to mobilize the Israeli public opinion against Barak — who negotiated peace with Arafat —for political ends. Netanyahu is motivated by extremist religious beliefs.
Nowadays, “the ideological factor is so eminent, even the labor party, a leftist one, is included. The Israeli public opinion by far moves toward the right while the Israeli left is decaying,” said Dr. Gad.

Israeli Violations Under International Law

With such frequent violations, Muslim countries and Palestinians could internationally file a lawsuit against Israel.

Dr. Lynk contends that increasingly a number of countries recognize universal jurisdiction, which allows a lawsuit for damages caused by violations of international law. The first step is to begin with those countries domestic courts.

“It is evident that Israeli courts are not interested in allowing claims of international law for damages caused by the occupation,” said Dr. Lynk.

“The principle issue is to persuade countries, like Canada, France, Australia, England, and other countries that accepted the Rome Status to try Israel,” he continued.

Amr Taha is a staff writer for the Politics in Depth section of A graduate of the American University in Cairo, he holds a BA in political science with a specialization in international law and international relations.

Jews lobby ‘to remove Al-Aqsa Mosque’

Huh? The Israelis are like little children who want a lollipop that belongs to someone else and they refuse any other lollipop no it has to be that one!

Dear it doesn’t belong to you.


Well you can’t have it and remove what exactly? As if they don’t know what is Al Aqsa to the Muslims, they know very well and they know not one single evidence have been found for their lies that the so called temple was there. They just want to destroy it, period.

There is nothing for you in all of Palestine, you murdering colonists.

October 15, 2009, Press TV

Extremist Jewish organizations in Israel have demanded that the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock from East Jerusalem Al-Quds be transferred to Mecca.

Gershon Salomon is seeking the removal of the mosques from East Jerusalem Al-Quds, which Israel occupied during the 1967 aggression and illegally annexed it later despite international opposition, Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth reported on Wednesday.

The founder and leader of the ultra-Orthodox Temple Mount and Eretz Yisrael Faithful Movement plans to have Israeli engineers transfer the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock to the Muslims’ holy city of Mecca, the daily added.

The Israeli paper also quoted ultra-right Yehuda Etzion, who is associated with Israeli spy agencies, as saying that blowing up of the Muslim sanctities would become ‘inevitable’ to if Tel Aviv fails to dissemble and transfer the edifices.

Etzion was jailed for five years in the 1980s for a plot to explode the mosques on the Noble Sanctuary (Haram al-Sharif), and has vowed he would do the same again.

The Al-Aqsa Mosque has been attacked by extremist Jews over the past week while the mosque compound was sealed off to Muslim worshippers.

Israel also deployed thousands of troops in the area to quell demonstrations by Palestinians protesters who accused Tel Aviv of efforts to take away the Islamic-Palestinian identity of the Muslims’ third holy site.

Jordan, who enjoys the right to look after all Islamic and Christian holy sites in East Jerusalem Al-Quds under a 1994 peace treaty, demanded last week that Israel keep Jewish extremists away from the compound and keep the Mugrabi Gate closed.

Aqsa impasse continues: “Israel” imposes more restrictions on Muslim worshipers

by Umayyah Jiha-Al Rayah newspaper-Qatar

by Umayyah Jiha-Al Rayah newspaper-Qatar

From Khalid Amayreh in the West Bank (From Palestinian Information Center-PIC)

Faced with a determined Muslim stance against persistent efforts by government-backed Jewish extremists to arrogate a foothold at the Aqsa Mosque, the Israeli government has imposed further restrictions on Muslim entry into the Haram al Sharif compound, considered the third holiest Islamic sanctuary.

Muslim officials in al-Quds ( Jerusalem ) told PIC that Israeli police forces stationed at the sanctuary’s gates were forcing worshipers to leave their identity cards. Those refusing to leave their IDs with the police were refused entry and forcefully turned back or arrested.

The stringent measure is apparently meant to force the incoming Muslims to leave the Mosque as soon as possible and not remain ensconced at the cite in order to repulse Jewish intruders seeking to gain “prayer rights” at the Islamic shrine.

Jewish groups are openly calling for the destruction of Islamic holy places in Jerusalem in order to build a Jewish Temple, which some Jewish theological circles claim would speed up the appearance of a Jewish Messiah, or Redeemer, who would rule the world from Jerusalem.

Earlier, the Israeli occupation authorities issued a ban barring Muslim males below the age of 50 years from accessing the Aqsa Mosque. Younger people, including those holding the Israeli citizenship, were not allowed to reach the vicinity of the Haram al Sharif (Noble Sanctuary)

As many as a hundred Muslims have been arrested for “disobeying police orders” and “disturbing the peace.”

Sheikh Ra’ed Salah, head of the Islamic movement across the Green Line ( Israel ) and his deputy Sheikh Kamal al-Khatib have been placed under town arrest and barred from entering al-Quds for one month.
The draconian measure coincided with fresh threats by some Jewish leaders to outlaw the Islamic movement and strip its leaders of citizenship.

High morale

Meanwhile, hundreds of Muslims who have maintained an uninterrupted presence at the Aqsa Mosque for the past two weeks are feeling a certain sense of victory, having succeeded in thwarting entry of Jewish intruders into the Aqsa esplanade and also in highlighting hostile Jewish designs against the Islamic holy place.

“Undoubtedly, our morale is very high, and the reason is simple. Our cause is just and our struggle is motivated by a deep sense of justice. This is a matter of deep faith. This is why our people are steadfast in their unshakable conviction that what we are doing is right and just,” said Sheikh Ikrema Sabri.

Sabri said more and more Muslims around the world were now aware of the dangers haunting Islamic holy places in Jerusalem as a result of Jewish plots.

“Our goal was from the very inception to raise the awareness of the Muslim world, governments as well as peoples, about what is happening here. And I think we have achieved this goal.

“I am not saying the battle is over, obviously it won’t be over until the occupation is over. But at least we have succeeded in communicating a message to Israel and the world at large that any assault against this sanctuary will trigger a huge conflagration.”

This is a message that not only Muslim religious leaders and wakf officials are trying to get through.

The leaders of the 1.5 million-strong Arab community in Israel are also trying rather forcefully to send the same message “to all those concerned.”

On Wednesday, a large delegation from the “Follow-up committee” representing heads of local councils, Arab Knesset members and civic leaders toured the Aqsa Mosque esplanade.

During the solidarity tour, the leaders of the Arab community across the Green Line vowed to “sacrifice blood and soil for the Aqsa Mosque.”

They also undertook to form a “first line of defense” against Zionist-Jewish plots to demolish Islamic holy places for the purpose of building a Jewish Temple within the al-Aqsa arena.

“It is our fate to be the most immediate defenders of Islam’s first Qibla (direction to which Muslims face during prayer). We will do what we have to do with utmost serenity and conviction, and determination,” said Muhammed Zeidan, a veteran political and community leader.

Continued struggle

The struggle to protect Islam’s third holiest place from recurrent Israeli attempts at gaining a foothold for Jews, possibly by way of portioning the holy place, is likely to continue and escalate.

This is the view of nearly every Muslim in Jerusalem and occupied Palestine, laymen, intellectuals and leaders.
Ibrahim abu Ghush is the personal secretary of Sheikh Muhammd Hussein, one of the highest- ranking religious officials at the Supreme Muslim Council, the body overseeing the Aqsa Mosque.

He told PIC that the Islamic leadership was under no illusion that Israel might take a sensible approach and prevent extremist Jews from provoking Muslims by storming the Aqsa esplanade and holding Talmudic Jewish rituals.

“We have to be constantly vigilant. We have to maintain a constant and sizeable presence. We have to show them that no matter what they do to scare us, we will remain committed to defending and protecting this place even if this cost us our lives.

“We have an iron-clad will to defend our mosque.”

Abu Gush dismissed as “silly and ludicrous” Israeli claims that “Muslims are making problems out of nothing and that the Israeli police were out there to maintain peace and security.”

“Of course, these are cheap lies and the Israelis are very good at lying.

“How could they claim that we are creating trouble when they are allowing all these fanatics to desecrate the holy place? These are not legitimate tourists or visitors. A true visitor who visits a holy place or even a historical place doesn’t call for its destruction as these fanatics do. These are actually terrorists at heart. They are only awaiting the opportune time to carry out their evil designs.”

Sheikh Sabri and other Muslim leaders in Jerusalem and in occupied Palestine in general have lauded a call by Sheikh Yousuf al Qaradawi, the prominent Muslim scholar based in Qatar , for declaring Friday, 9 October, a day of anger to protest Israeli plots against the Aqsa Mosque.

“We are confident that the call by the venerable scholar will be heeded all over the Muslim world. We also hope that Muslim states will initiate a political and diplomatic campaign to force the Israeli regime to halt Jewish provocations against the Aqsa Mosque,” Sabri said.

The Jordanian government this week warned Israel that altering the “status quo” at the Haram al Sharif of Jerusalem would have grave consequences.

Some Egyptian and Arab League officials have made similar statements. However, Israel seems utterly unsettled by these largely innocuous statements, which suggest that the situation in Jerusalem is likely to deteriorate further especially if the occupation authorities continue to encourage Jewish extremists to arrogate a foothold at the most contentious spot on earth.

On Thursday, 8 October, the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz reported that an influential rabbi told Shimon Peres that Jews shouldn’t make pilgrimage to “Temple Mount” so as not to evoke global outrage.

The paper quoted Rabbi Yosef Shlomo Elyashiv as saying that Jews are prohibited to ascend to the Temple Mount:

“According to halacha (Jewish religious law), it is forbidden to ascend to Temple Mount. I’ve said this in the past, and I am once again repeating this statement that Jews are forbidden to go up to the site.”

A Voice Besieged in Al-Aqsa Mosque (Exclusive): Al-Aqsa Defenders Defy “Israel”

by Hasan Idelbi-Al Bayan newspaper-UAE

by Hasan Idelbi-Al Bayan newspaper-UAE

By Amr Taha, October 10, 2009, IOL

Besieged between the hammer of the Israeli blockade, and the anvil of official Muslim silence, Al-Aqsa mosque is under an imminent threat of being stormed by extremist Jewish settlers.

Since the very time extremist Jewish settlers have announced their intentions to storm Al-Aqsa during Sukkot, a seven-day Jewish festival that has started since October 4, Palestinians rushed to defend Al-Aqsa. has exclusively interviewed Sheikh Ali Abu-Sheikha, one of the 200 Palestinians besieged inside Al-Aqsa Mosque and threatened to be detained at any time by the Israeli troops surrounding the Mosque.

Sheikh Ali Abu-Sheikha, the Islamic Movement’s Counselor for Al-Aquds Affairs, spoke over the phone to IOL Politics in Depth. (IOL): What is the situation right now inside Al-Aqsa mosque and how do you face the Israeli siege?

Sheikh Ali: The situation is so intense, and will continue to be so as long as the occupation continues.

The Israeli siege against Al-Aqsa and against the defenders of Al-Aqsa trapped inside continues. Jewish extremist groups and the Israeli police are trying to storm and desecrate the sacred Al-Aqsa on a daily basis.

Those inside Al-Aqsa Mosque are determined to prevent any desecration of Al-Aqsa, and curb any opportunity for Jews to storm it.

As for the siege imposed against us, we are facing the shortage of food b[ut] praying all the time.

The Israeli forces ban the entry of food into Al-Aqsa. Our families in Al-Quds’ neighborhoods, close to Al-Aqsa, and people inside Mandate Palestine try to deliver food to us, but are prevented.

The Israeli occupation forces confiscate and ban these meals from entering Al-Aqsa.

Nevertheless, we have our special ways to enable us, by a way or another, to take a little of a little of food.

IOL: How far do you suffer from such shortage of food and water, and how far is this affecting you?

Sheikh Ali: Never. No one is suffering from such shortage of food and water. We have strong will and high morale. We are, and will, not be defeated anyway despite the suffocating blockade.

We are steadfastly united inside one of the most important Muslim places, the holy Al-Aqsa. This place gives us courage, high morale, and persistence vis a vis the shortage of food and water.

If Israel continues the blockade, we are unwaveringly going to defend Al-Aqsa whatever consequences will be.

IOL: How many people are inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque with you now?

Sheikh Ali: They are probably 200 or a little more individual inside the mosque. During Zhuhr and Maghrib Prayers, many Palestinians above 50 years old enter Al-Aqsa to pray.

In such circumstances of the Israeli blockade, the Israeli police allow Palestinians above 50 years old the to enter into Al-Aqsa for short time of prayer given that they must first give their ID cards to the occupation forces.

If any of those allowed to temporarily pray inside Al-Aqsa stay a little bit late, they have to go to the headquarters of the Israeli Intelligence Agency to receive their IDs.

IOL: What is your daily program inside Al-Aqsa under this tight siege?

Sheikh Ali: After`Isha’ Prayer, we tightly close all doors inside Al-Aqsa and turn off all lights. We usually do not move inside Al-Aqsa, even we are unable to go to bathrooms to do ablution, because any one who exits the mosque will be arrested.

We pray away from the mosque’s windows because the Israeli police stand by the mosque’s windows trying to track us.

During Fajr Prayer, we meet the people allowed to enter the mosque.

After Fajr Prayer till sunset, we organize sit-ins by Al-Maghriba Gate through which we prevent settlers from storming Al-Aqsa.

During sunset, we pray and break our fast. Then, we pray `Isha’.

Most of our time is dedicated to sit-ins and resistance. We are awake all the time because it is possible that any time Israel could storm the mosque. I am talking to you now and the Israel police is standing by the mosque’s windows.

IOL: Have any Israeli Jewish groups entered Al-Aqsa Mosque during these days?

Sheikh Ali: The Israeli occupation authority has mobilized thousands of settlers and extremist Jews during Sukkot to perform their rituals inside the holy Al-Aqsa itself.

Backed and protected by the Israeli police, settlers have come up with drums and trumpets to perform their rituals inside Al-Aqsa.

Brazenly challenging the Muslim and Arab world, Jews have announced their intention to storm Al-Aqsa.

The Israeli police has prevented children, youth, and those under 50 from entering the Al-Aqsa’s campus.

Furthermore, it has blockaded Al-Aqsa mosque by closing all gates leading to it after besieging Al-Quds city and dividing it into sections for easier control.

The Israeli police has installed barriers on roads leading to Al-Aqsa. This all aimed at facilitating the situation for Jews to storm the mosque.

However, thanks to Almighty Allah, there have been people inside Al-Aqsa who decided to stay inside the mosque since the moment Israel has put physical barriers on the roads to it.

Until this moment, we have succeeded in warding off any Israeli attempts to invade the Mosque.

IOL: Many Palestinians from all over Palestine tried to reach you inside Al-Aqsa. Have they managed to do so?

Sheikh Ali: The Israeli occupation forces have put several physical barriers on the road to Al-Aqsa and inside many Palestinian cities in Muthaleth, Jalil, and Al-Ramelah alleys. These barriers are 200km away from Al-Aqsa, so no car can cross them.

Since the first day, after the Israeli occupation forces prevented Palestinian convoys from entering Al-Aqsa, so many of them insisted on walking the 150km to Al-Aqsa. Yet, Israelis prevented them from walking to the mosque.

Therefore, Palestinians decided to pray Al-Fajr 150km away from Al-Aqsa.

Many of Palestinians toiled to reach Al-Aqsa by circumventing the Israeli blockade.

However, after they succeeded in entering Al-Quds, they were unable to reach Al-Aqsa because of the tight blockade against Al-Aqsa.

IOL: How ready are you in case Israeli forces and Jewish settlers storm Al-Aqsa?

Sheikh Ali: There is an evil Israeli plan to storm Al-Aqsa. On October 6, the Israeli Occupation forces tried to arrest four of us, and tried to invade the mosque, but our will and solidarity prevented them from carrying out their plans to invade Al-Aqsa.

The attempt to arrest four of us was curbed after a brief clash against the Israeli forces, as prayers were able to free the four.

IOL: Do you think Israelis are trying now to divide Al-Aqsa, as they did before with the Al-Haram Al-Ibrahimi (Abraham’s Mosque)?

Sheikh Ali: All Israeli provocations indicate a plan to accelerate the building of the so-called Jewish Temple [Temple Mount] on the ruins of Al-Aqsa. According to the declaration of Israel’s Minister of Interior, there is a suggestion to divide Al-Aqsa between Muslims and Jews. Consequently, Israel tries to carry out such plan during these days.

IOL: What are the counter plans of the Islamic Movement inside Mandate Palestine to face such Israeli agenda, especially since such provocations may probably continue for years?

Sheikh Ali: On the eve of Yom Kippur, a Jewish feast, extremist Jews had planned to invade Al-Aqsa. However, Palestinians averted such an attempt. There were fierce clashes between the Israeli police and settlers and the Palestinians that continued for about two successive days.

Now, Jews have tried to invade Al-Aqsa as they commemorate Sukkot, yet thanks to Almighty Allah, we were able to ward off any offences against holy Al-Aqsa. We are inside Al-Aqsa to defend it, even it takes longer time.

IOL: How far do tunnels dug by Israelis around and under Al-Aqsa affect its foundation?

Sheikh Ali: Digging tunnels and excavation schemes incessantly continue until now. We are now inundated with defending Al-Aqsa from any attack while, at the same time, there are continuing projects of diggig more tunnels under Al-Aqsa.

There are tunnels in As-Selwan alley, Wadi Helwa, under the old city, and even under Al-Aqsa mosque itself.

This means houses around Al-Aqsa are on the verge of collapse, and most of Al-Aqsa’s area is without foundations. Not to mention that many synagogues are built under Al-Aqsa, so also in Ein Helwa and As-Selwan.

Recently, Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, has planned to open the tunnel starting from As-Selwan alley directly into Al-Aqsa mosque.

Al-Aqsa Foundation has discovered such a tunnel, which is 600 meters long and 2 meters wide.

IOL: What you would like to say to Muslims?

Sheikh Ali: We urge Muslims to unite for defending Al-Aqsa, which is under very critical situation. Al-Aqsa does not only belong to Palestinians. It belongs to every Muslim.

Amr Taha is a staff writer for the Politics in Depth section of A graduate of the American University in Cairo, he holds a BA in political science with a specialization in international law and international relations.

Update: Israeli Occupation Lifts Restrictions on Access to Al-Aqsa

Following al-Aqsa clashes, “Israel” mulls banning Islamic movement

by Muhammad Sabainah

by Muhammad Saba'inah

by Jonathan Cook, The Electronic Intifada, 8 October 2009

The Israeli government announced yesterday it would consider banning Israel’s Islamic Movement at the next cabinet meeting, in a significant escalation of tensions that have fueled a fortnight of bloody clashes in Jerusalem over access to the Haram al-Sharif compound of mosques.

The move followed the arrest of the movement’s leader, Sheikh Raed Salah, on Tuesday on suspicion of incitement and sedition. Police accused Sheikh Salah of calling for a “religious war” in recent statements in which he warned that Israel was seeking a takeover of the Haram, which includes the al-Aqsa mosque.

Sheikh Salah was released a few hours later on condition that he stay away from Jerusalem for 30 days. The decision was widely interpreted as a move to damp down a possible backlash from Israel’s 1.3 million Palestinian citizens, many of whom regard the sheikh as a spiritual leader. Police were deployed in large numbers throughout Jerusalem yesterday.

An Islamic Movement spokesman, Zadi Nujeidat, told the Haaretz newspaper: “We will continue our activities and call for a continued presence in and around the mosque. We are used to arrests.”

The move against the Islamic Movement follows a series of pronouncements from Sheikh Salah, echoing statements from Palestinian officials in the occupied territories, that have infuriated the Israeli government.

This week he called on Muslims who could reach the compound — access to which has been heavily restricted by the Israeli police — to “shield the [al Aqsa] mosque with their bodies.” Sheikh Salah himself has been barred by the courts from entering the Haram compound for several months.

At his annual “Al-Aqsa is in danger” rally in his hometown of Umm al-Fahm in northern Israel last week, he warned tens of thousands of supporters that Israel was trying to prize away control of the compound from the Islamic religious authorities. He added that, should Israel force a choice between martyrdom and renouncing al-Aqsa, “we will clearly choose to be martyrs.”

Like many other Palestinian leaders, Sheikh Salah fears that, as well as “Judaizing” East Jerusalem, Israel is engineering a takeover of the Haram — known to Jews as the Temple Mount because the remains of the destroyed first and second Jewish temples are believed to lie under the mosques.

He has raised repeated concerns that Israel is secretly digging under the mosques, as it did before opening the Western Wall tunnels in 1996. Then, clashes led to the deaths of 75 Palestinians and 15 Israeli soldiers.

A delegation of Palestinian leaders from inside Israel who visited the compound yesterday warned that there was strong evidence of such excavations.

In an interview with Haaretz on Monday, Sheikh Salah also warned against “infiltration of extremist Jewish elements” into the compound — a reference to Messianic cults that want the mosques destroyed so a third temple can be built.

Muslim leaders throughout the region have expressed growing concern that the Israeli police are secretly escorting such groups into the compound following a decision by Israel in 2003 to allow non-Muslims to visit the Haram without oversight from the Islamic authorities.

Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza, meanwhile, are unable to reach Jerusalem, and Israel has increasingly limited access to the mosques for Palestinians with Israeli IDs.

During clashes at the compound on Sunday, the Islamic Movement’s deputy, Kamal Khatib, and the Palestinian Authority’s minister in charge of Jerusalem, Hatem Abdel Khader, were arrested. Both were released on bail and banned from Jerusalem for 15 days.

Calls from Israeli officials for Sheikh Salah’s arrest and restrictions on the Islamic Movement have been growing all week.

The deputy prime minister, Silvan Shalom, of prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party, told Israel Radio on Tuesday: “Sheikh Raed Salah should be behind bars.”

The cabinet meeting on Sunday will discuss a law to ban the Islamic Movement being drafted by the far-right Yisrael Beiteinu party of Avigdor Lieberman, the foreign minister. The bill is expected to be presented to ministers a week later.

The interior minister, Eli Yishai, of the Shas party, announced on Tuesday he would withdraw funding for imams who “incited” against Israel and was investigating whether he could fire them.

The Islamic Movement has rapidly grown in popularity by focusing on charitable and welfare work and has won control of several councils since the 1980s.

Despite eschewing terrorism, the movement is regarded with great suspicion by Israeli officials, who have shut down its charities and newspaper on several occasions. Sheikh Salah and four other leaders of the Islamic Movement were arrested in 2003 accused of supporting terrorism but released two years later in a plea bargain that significantly reduced the charges.

It is unclear how Israel would ban the Islamic Movement.

Analysts say the government could use the 1945 emergency regulations from British rule but the move would be unlikely to withstand judicial scrutiny. Traditionally, the security establishment has argued that it is better not to push the Islamic Movement underground.

The US state department was reported this week to have expressed concern to Israel that it and the Palestinian Authority not “inflame tensions” over the Haram al-Sharif.

Jonathan Cook is a writer and journalist based in Nazaret. His latest books are Israel and the Clash of Civilisations: Iraq, Iran and the Plan to Remake the Middle East (Pluto Press) and Disappearing Palestine: Israel’s Experiments in Human Despair (Zed Books). His website is

Outrage over “Israel’s” actions against al-Aqsa

Turkey condemns Israel’s closure of al-Aqsa

Tue, 06 Oct 2009, Press TV

Thousands of people in Turkey have poured into the streets and held a protest rally, condemning Israel’s closure of the al-Aqsa Mosque in al-Quds.

Chanting anti-Israeli slogans, angry protesters burned Israeli flags outside Tel Aviv’s Consulate building in Istanbul on Monday and called for the immediate re-opening of the holy compound.

The demonstrators also criticized Tel Aviv for its deadly blockade starving the people of the Gaza Strip in place since June 2007.

Israeli forces closed access to the holy site in Jerusalem (al-Quds) on Sunday citing security concerns.

Following the closure, hundreds of Palestinians gathered at the holy site –known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as Haram al-Sharif Haram al-Sharif– and staged a sit-in to protect the compound from Jewish hardliners whom they fear intend to damage it.

Israeli police clashed with the protesters, fired tear gas, and stun grenades to disperse the crowd. Several Palestinians were injured and a number of arrests were made.

Receiving strong criticism from Muslims across the world, Israeli police partially opened al-Aqsa Mosque after deploying thousands of security forces in and around the holy site, allowing access only to Muslim women and men aged 50 and over.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem al-Quds during a 1967 aggression and later annexed it in 1981 in a move not recognized by the international community. The status of the city is among the thorniest issues of the conflict between Israel and Palestinians, who insist that any Palestinian state must include the city as its capital.

Sheikh Qassem Calls to Raise Voice against Israeli Criminality

Al manar

06/10/2009 Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General Sheikh Naim Qassem urged on Tuesday all Arabs and Muslims to support and stand by Al-Quds and its people to save Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Palestinian cause, warning that otherwise, Arabs would be conspiring against Al-Quds.

Speaking during a protest held at the southern suburb of Beirut by the the Association of the Islamic Scholars in Lebanon in solidarity with Al-Aqsa, Sheikh Qassem said that the Palestinian cause passes through a crucial stage as it is subjected to a three dimensional “Israeli”-American scheme.

His eminence noted that the so-called peace negotiations, the two-state solution, the trilateral meetings are part of the scheme and are nothing but illusion. “It’s a fully considered American spectacle that seeks to give the Zionists the time they need,” Sheikh Qassem said.

Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General also warned that the United States aimed at trivializing the Palestinian cause and giving priority to other topics such as the Iranian and Korean nukes in an attempt to diminish the number one cause in the Middle East; Palestine.

Sheikh Qassem highlighted that the Goldstone report is a chance to raise the voice against the criminal acts of the Zionist entity and reminded the international community and the Arab world of all the crimes and violations the Zionist entity has been committing in different parts of the region.

His eminence said that the Goldstone report is the first international acknowledgement of the Israeli crimes and therefore is a good chance to state that the occupying enemy should be stopped and that even his allies are not capable of remaining silent in face of all the inhumane acts that were portrayed lately in Operation Cast Lead on the besieged Gaza Strip.

Sheikh Qassem concluded by saluting all the resistance fighters, the freed women detainees, all the Palestinian struggling people and stressing that the resistance is the only means of defying the Zionist existence in the region and in Palestine.

“Tensions on Al-Aqsa Mosque Are Start of Difficult Era”

Al manar

05/10/2009 Many supporters of the Islamic Movement’s northern branch marched from the al-Aqsa Mosque to the Wadi Joz neighborhood in occupied east Jerusalem, after Israeli police denied them entry to the al-Aqsa mosque compound.

The movement’s head, Sheikh Raed Salah, who was in Wadi Joz, urged the followers to come in masses to al-Aqsa Mosque and said, “We will liberate al-Aqsa with blood and with fire.” Islamic Movement sources said there were still dozens of worshippers in the mosque who hadn’t left since Sunday.

Meanwhile, the Palestinian vice-chairman of the Islamic Movement’s northern branch, Sheikh Kamel Hatib, expressed concern over the recent tensions on the Al-Aqsa Mosque. “This is the beginning of a very difficult era,” he said.

Sheikh Khatib said of Israeli Police Commander Aharon Franco in occupied Jerusalem, “We are not saying no to him or to anyone else – ‘thank you.’ This is our mosque. The things he said express the position of all the senior officials of the State.”

The Arab public was enraged Monday Franco’s remarks, who, following recent riots at Al-Aqsa Mosque say “Arabs are ungrateful”. Arab leaders accused France of restricting freedom of religion under the patronage of the police.

MK Ahmad Tibi said, “The district commander should take a course in democracy and values of equality…Not all Jews are smart. The Israel Police is hurting the Muslim’s freedom of religion and restricting prayer to over the age of 50. God himself did not set such a restriction. Even the occupation authorities must allow the freedom of worship.”

Regarding Franco’s comments, Tibi said, “We don’t need any favors. What is needed is that you and your friends uphold your duty to us as citizens and as people. Once a minister calls us ‘Araboosh’ (derogatory term for Arabs) and now this one calls us ingrates. To think these are the people responsible for upholding the law and public order.”

Balad Faction Chairman MK Jamal Zahalka called for Franco to be fired. According to MK Zahalka, “If he has no genuine respect for the freedom of worship, he must leave.”

“His excellency Franco has become the lord that allows freedom of worship to the people. Al-Aqsa is a holy site for Muslims, and Franco’s presence along with his people is a gross insult to the holiness of the site,” added MK Zahalka.

MK Talab El-Sana (United Arab List – Ta’al) also demanded Franco resign, saying, “The district commander has caught a virus even worse than the swine flu – the ‘racism flu’ and hatred of Arabs. The Arabs are not asking for charity or favors, they were rightfully in Jerusalem before he even dreamt of being there. It is his responsibility to ensure the right of worship to all denominations.”

The Higher Arab Monitoring Committee on Monday decided to go to occupied Jerusalem on Tuesday to visit the al-Aqsa Mosque. “It can’t be that a police commander in Israel makes such statements. The mosque should be open not only during Ramadan; he is not doing us any favors. It’s our religious right that no one can deprive us of,” the committee’s chairman Muhammad Zidan said.

Zidan expresses concern of an escalation in the situation, “I fear the events of 2000 may be repeated, and I hope that the government is responsible enough to make the decision to allow Muslims to enter the Temple Mount as usual, and not continue to deny entry. Denying entry is a dangerous thing that will lead to a disaster.”

Resheq: Israeli crime in the Aqsa Mosque meant to destroy it

October 4, 2009

TRIPOLI, LIBYA, (PIC) — Ezzat Al-Resheq, member of Hamas’s political bureau, has warned Sunday of a possible Israeli carnage inside the holy Aqsa Mosque, and held the Zionist occupation fully responsible for any repercussions.

“What is happening in the Aqsa Msoque in terms of sealing it off and besieging Palestinian worshippers inside it is indeed a new Israeli crime aiming at paving the way to destroy the Mosque and to rebuild the alleged Third Temple on its ruins”, asserted Resheq from the Libyan capital Tripoli as he participated in the Libyan celebration of the Fateh of September revolution.

He also described the aggression on the Aqsa Mosque as a “red line” that no one should dare to cross, asserting that the aggression on the Mosque would make all the options open before the Palestinian people to resist the occupation.

He added that despite the trilateral “Abbas -Obama-Netanyahu” meeting, the holy Mosque was stormed at the hands of Israeli settlers on the following morning of that infamous meeting.

Resheq also lashed out at the Ramallah-based PA for withdrawing a vote on the crucial Goldstone report before the UN Human Rights Council that could indict the Zionist entity of committing war crimes against the Palestinian people during the war on Gaza, urging the PA in Ramallah to halt security coordination, and to fold the chapter of the futile negotiations with the Israeli occupation authorities.

He also disregarded Abbas’s call to form an investigation committee to probe the withdrawal decision and said it was meant to cover Abbas and his associates’ role in championing the decision and of helping Israeli criminals to evade arrest by international courts.

“They (Abbas and retinue) are trying to cover their crime by forming that committee after our Palestinian people and the Arab and Muslim masses strongly condemned their irresponsible action”, underlined Resheq.

But Resheq plainly accused Mahmoud Abbas, Saeb Erikat, and Yasser Abd Rabbo of orchestrating that decision.

Finally, Resheq saluted Palestinian Jerusalemites and Palestinian citizens in the 1948-occupied Palestinian lands for defending the Mosque and challenged the Israeli war machine with their bare hands, urging the Arab and Muslim peoples to play their role in defending the Mosque.

Again Palestinians Stand Up to Israeli Attempts to Desecrate Al-Aqsa

Palestinians Stand Up to Israeli Attempts to Desecrate Al-Aqsa

by Mohamad Shmaysani, al manar

04/10/2009 Residents of the Al-Aqsa Mosque region gathered on Sunday to stand up to scores of Israeli occupation forces who have circled the sacred mosque, part of Israel’s continuous bids to desecrate the Muslim site.

Israeli occupation police closed the Mosque to worshipers and Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat likened the Israeli move to that of former PM Sharon’s visit to site in 2000, which sparked the second intifada.

Israeli settlers have been trying to desecrate the Aqsa Mosque under the protection of occupation security forces which brought in dozens of armed vehicles outside the site. “Providing police escort for settlers who are against peace at all costs is not the act of someone who is committed to peace,’ Erekat said.

On Saturday evening, calls spread on the Palestinian media and throughout the night to protect Al-Aqsa. Occupation forces have been working on getting out dozens of Palestinians who have been staying inside the Mosque anticipating attacks by settlers.

On the 27th of September, Ultra-Orthodox Israelis tried to desecrate the holy Mosque and a confrontation with worshipers and resident ensued and left 17 Palestinians wounded.

The Mosque was closed as many Israeli settlers are to flock into occupied Jerusalem during the “Sukkot” holiday. Similar provocative “visits” by settlers have sparked tension and confrontations with Palestinians on many occasions.

Muslim clerics, senior Palestinian officials and heads of Islamic movements have called on Muslim worshippers to arrive in masses at the al-Aqsa Mosque “in order to curb the police’s attempts to allow Jewish settlers to enter the compound,” and desecrate the holy site.

Khatib: Israeli police cause many Palestinian casualties at Al-Asbat gate


OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)– Sheikh Kamal Al-Khatib, the deputy head of the Islamic Movement in the 1948 occupied lands, said Sunday that a large number of Israeli foot and mounted policemen kidnapped and attacked dozens of Palestinian citizens at Al-Asbat gate which led to many casualties among the citizens.

Sheikh Khatib, who was also assaulted by Israeli police this morning, explained during a telephone call with the Palestinian information center (PIC) that hundreds of Palestinians from 1948 occupied lands headed last night towards the Aqsa Mosque to stay inside it with the aim of foiling any attempt by extremist Jewish groups to storm it.

He added that the Israeli police set up roadblocks at the entrances of Haifa, Nazareth and Umm Al-Fahm to prevent the advance of Palestinian masses.

The Palestinian activist noted that groups of Palestinian young men managed to reach Al-Asbat gate where there was heavy presence of Israeli policemen and border guards.

The activist stressed that the police elements attacked the Palestinian worshipers without any justifications in order to give Israeli settlers gathering outside the Mosque a chance to storm the Aqsa Mosque through Al-Maghariba gate.

“Israel” eyes Al-Aqsa

by Eli Saliba-Al Watan newspaper-Qatar

by Eli Saliba-Al Watan newspaper-Qatar

Recent Israeli police violence at Al-Aqsa Mosque confirms that Israel’s leaders condone attempts by Jewish fanatics to destroy the second holiest Islamic shrine

Al-Aqsa Mosque esplanade witnessed yet another episode of violence on Sunday, 27 September, writes Khaled Amayreh in the West Bank, when a group of Jewish religious fanatics disguised as foreign tourists tried to storm Haram Al-Sharif, apparently to gain “prayer rites” at the Islamic sanctuary, source.

The Muslim guards, along with worshipers, who had been expecting an intrusion of some sort to take place in light of the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement), peacefully ousted the intruders after they began performing Jewish rituals and calling for the destruction of Islamic holy places.

However, as soon as the zealots left the esplanade, dozens of crack Israeli policemen stormed the sanctuary compound, attacking worshipers, beating them with truncheons, and firing rubber-coated bullets and stun grenades all over the area.

More than 40 Palestinians were hurt, two seriously. One elderly man was hit in the eye with a rubber-coated bullet. A young man also suffered concussion in the head when he was hit with a stun grenade.

In addition, dozens of other people suffered from tear gas inhalation as well as brutal beatings by police using “exaggerated force”.

Mahmoud Abu Atta, who witnessed the episode, described to Al-Ahram Weekly what happened. “When the zealots were repulsed rather peacefully, the police became very outraged and agitated. As many as 70 policemen attacked us indiscriminately, young and old, with full force, using rubber-coated bullets, truncheons, tear gas and even poisonous gas… I insist poisonous gas. Then the police chased worshipers inside the main mosque, Al-Aqsa Mosque, where the soldiers fired heavily into the holy place, causing many people to suffocate as a result of gas inhalation.”

“I saw the police gang up on young people, beating them mercilessly. The police were not out to maintain law and order. They just wanted to retaliate and punish us for repulsing the fanatical settlers,” Atta added. He said the worshipers sought desperately to defend themselves against exaggerated police brutality, using stones, shoes and chairs.

More confrontations broke out later near Bab Al-Majles when the Israeli police prevented hundreds of other Muslims, including leaders of the Islamic movement in Israel, from accessing Al-Aqsa. At least four people were injured and many were detained and taken away to nearby police lockups. The police also assaulted Abdel-Azim Salhab, head of the Supreme Muslim Council, as he was trying to enter the Sanctuary of Jerusalem through the northern gate, known as Bab Al-Asbat.

Salhab and other Muslim officials in Jerusalem had called on Muslims throughout the city to head for Al-Aqsa Mosque to protect it from Jewish fanatics trying to take over the Islamic shrine. The call was heeded as hundreds of Jerusalemites and other Muslims from across the Green Line (Israel) arrived at the mosque to repulse the zealots.

The police also prevented a number of prominent Muslim religious and civic figures from entering Al-Aqsa compound — including Sheikh Ikrma Sabri, an imam and preacher at Al-Aqsa Mosque. Hatem Abdel-Qader, a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, was also barred from entering.

Speaking to the Weekly, Sabri described the situation as “very grave” and “could explode at any moment”. The Muslim scholar accused the Israeli occupation authorities of trying to gradually desensitise Muslim reactions to Jewish attempts to create “new facts” at the compound. “They simply want to take over part of the Haram. They are trying to partition the Haram as they did in Hebron with the Ibrahimi Mosque. Muslims must never ever allow such a thing to happen.”

“We constantly urge Muslims here to maintain a permanent and uninterrupted presence at Al-Aqsa Mosque. And I can say this has been the case for many years. But the preservation of Al-Aqsa Mosque is not the sole responsibility of Muslims in Palestine, because the holy sanctuary belongs to the entire Muslim umma. Hence it is the responsibility of the entire umma to protect and safeguard this holy place from Zionist plots and evil designs.”

In recent years, fanatical messianic Jewish groups have become more daring in their attempts to gain a foothold at the Islamic holy place as the police allowed them to perform Jewish Talmudic rites and rituals within the Haram esplanade. Some of the rituals included the attempted laying of a cornerstone for the building of a Jewish temple, presumably after the destruction of the Islamic edifices in the area.

Politically, the latest tension is undoubtedly leaving a dark shadow on stumbling American efforts to restart stalled peace talks between the Palestinian Authority and Israel. Observers in the occupied territories contend that an outbreak of violence, especially if Jewish provocations persisted, could easily deteriorate into a third Intifada that would make all talk about a peace process irrelevant.

Authorities ban anti-Israel rally in Jordan

I don’t expect anything different from traitor stooges but their hypocrisy strikes decent people to the bone. The king of Jordan or any of these so called rulers have no authority to give any of our rights.

If you think you sold off Palestine then you are mistaken.

Fri, 02 Oct 2009, Press TV

Jordanian authorities have outlawed a rally which the country’s Islamic groups were to stage in protest at the Israeli troops’ breaking into the al-Aqsa Mosque earlier this week.

“The Amman Governor Samir Mobaydeen has rejected a request by Islamic leaders to organize the demonstration in downtown Amman after Friday prayers to condemn the desecration of al-Aqsa Mosque,” the Islamic Action Front (IAF) said in a statement.

Clashes erupted early Sunday between Palestinians in the eastern part of al-Quds and the Israeli police as a group of Jewish radicals broke into the yard of al-Aqsa Mosque. About 16 Palestinians and several Israeli police were injured in the clashes, according to media reports.

Demonstrators in Amman on Monday set the Israeli flag on fire and called on the government officials to sever diplomatic relations with Tel Aviv in reaction to Israeli soldiers’ breaking into the Muslim sacred shrine.

Dozens of trade unionists and politicians meanwhile staged a sit-in in front of the headquarters of Jordan’s Professional Association Council. Protesters held banners reading, “Our blood is shed for you, our souls are sacrificed for your sanctity. We swear to you, Aqsa, that we will never forget you”.

Muslims consider the trespass into the al-Aqsa Mosque yard as part of a Judaization campaign that targets the holy city of al-Quds and a provocation of Muslim feelings.

Riots May Point to Third Palestinian Uprising

by Jalal Al Rifai-Al Dustour newspaper-Jordan

by Jalal Al Rifa'i-Al Dustour newspaper-Jordan

By Mel Frykberg

EAST JERUSALEM, Sep 30 (IPS) – Palestinian politicians and Israeli political analysts are warning of a third Palestinian Intifadah following serious rioting in East Jerusalem last Sunday.

Clashes broke out between Palestinians protesters and Israeli security forces after a group of extremist Israeli settlers, escorted by Israeli soldiers and police, tried to enter the compound of Al-Aqsa Mosque, Islam’s third holiest shrine which is situated in Jerusalem’s old city.

Palestinian youths pelted the Israeli police with stones and chairs. The Israelis responded with beatings, teargas, sound grenades and rubber-coated metal bullets. Dozens of police and protestors were injured in the ensuing violence.

On Sunday Israel closed the West Bank off for Yom Kippur, one of Judaism’s holiest days. This religious holiday often coincides with the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, increasing tensions between Israelis and Palestinians.

An extremist Israeli religious settler group, The Temple Mount Faithful, mark Yom Kippur annually by trying to enter the Al-Aqsa compound which they believe is built on the remains of the second Jewish Holy Temple destroyed by the Romans in AD 70.

The organisation has stated repeatedly that they intend to destroy Al-Aqsa Mosque and build the Third Holy Temple on top of its remains.

Against a background of Israel’s increasing Judaisation of East Jerusalem in a bid to keep the city united under eternal Israeli control and to usurp Palestinian aspirations to East Jerusalem as the capital of a future Palestinian state, Al-Aqsa has increasingly become a point of friction.

Muslim sensitivity towards Al-Aqsa and what is perceived as an outrageous assault on Islamic sensibilities has been a rallying cause for both Christian and Muslim Palestinians as well as Muslims of different political persuasions and nationalities.

The Lebanese resistance movement Hizbullah condemned the Israeli action while Hamas urged Palestinians throughout the West Bank, Gaza, and Israel to take to the streets and begin a new uprising against Israel in reaction to the clashes.

Archbishop Atallah Hanna, one of the highest ranking Christian clergymen in Jerusalem, declared Sunday’s violence a dark premonition of what he said were Israel’s plans for the city.

“We, as Christian Palestinians and Jerusalemites, cannot keep watching with our hands folded in the face of what happened. On Sunday it was Al-Aqsa, tomorrow it will be the Church of the Holy Sepulchre,” said Atallah, referring to the church built on the spot where Jesus is believed to be buried.

Dr Saeb Erekat, the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) top negotiator, said “the attack on ordinary civilians and worshippers is unacceptable. Israel must cease all actions that will only inflame the situation.”

Muhammad Dahlan, another top-ranking PA official and the alleged instigator of the civil war in Gaza between Hamas and Fatah, warned that a third Palestinian uprising could well be in the pipeline.

Bassam Abu Sharif, a former senior advisor to late PA president Yasser Arafat, and member of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), added his voice to a chorus of those raising the possibility of a third Intifadah against Israel.

“The Palestinians are preparing themselves to carry out another Intifadah of independence and freedom in response to Israeli violations, massacres and policies against the Palestinians, against Jerusalem, the confiscation of land, and the geographic separation of the Palestinian territories.”

On Monday night Israeli security forces raided Palestinian homes throughout East Jerusalem and arrested over 60 Palestinians Israel suspects of taking part in the riots.

On Tuesday IPS visited the site of the clashes, and despite the apparent surface calm, anger and resentment appeared to be simmering underneath.

Groups of heavily armed Israeli soldiers and police in vehicles and on foot were stationed at strategic corners in the old city and other areas of East Jerusalem as a state of high security was declared.

Several Palestinians appeared to be too scared to talk to IPS as Israeli police and soldiers moved in and monitored our conversations.

One Jerusalem resident who witnessed the clashes but wanted to remain anonymous told IPS, “There will be serious violence at Friday prayers if these Israeli fanatics again try their tricks. We are sick of them.”

Dr Samir Awad from Birzeit University north of Ramallah says a serious outbreak of violence is definitely in the offing.

“But I don’t think the Palestinians will be able to sustain a long-term Intifadah. They are too weak politically and economically in addition to being emotionally exhausted,” Awad told IPS.

“Palestinian are desperate, and despairing at the dead peace process. They have lost faith as U.S. President Barack Obama appears to have reneged on his promise re the settlements and exerting pressure on Israel.

“The possibility of the American administration having a counter plan involving plans for the establishment of a Palestinian state first and then addressing the settlements, East Jerusalem and the right of return as a way of countering Israeli recalcitrance seems overly optimistic,” added Awad.

However, Prof. Moshe Maoz from Jerusalem’s Hebrew University says the U.S. administration might still come up with the goods.

“Israelis sometimes misunderstand American culture which is more understated and cautious in comparison to Israelis, who tend to be outspoken and impatient. Just because Obama didn’t reiterate the settlement issue at the recent talks in New York does not mean he has given up on them,” Maoz told IPS.

“However, another Intifadah is quite possible if there is no breakthrough. Palestinian patience after 42 years of occupation is running thin.”

Dr Yousef Natsche, director of antiquities and tourism at the Islamic Waqf which administers Al-Aqsa, said he hoped there would be no further disturbances.

“But the provocative visits by Jewish extremists are increasing in both number and frequency and are supported by the Israeli authorities.

“Sunday’s violence is an indicator of what could happen in the future on an even larger scale if the Israelis continue not to heed our warnings,” Natsche told IPS.