Mar 03, 2019 15:51 UTC
  • Zionist entity bans senior religious scholar from entering al-Aqsa Mosque

Zionist officials have banned two high-ranking Palestinian Muslim clerics from entering al-Aqsa Mosque in al-Quds amid an escalation of acts of violence by Israeli forces and settlers against Palestinian people.

Firas al-Dibs, spokesperson for the Islamic Waqf (Endowment) organization, which manages the compound’s affairs, said Israeli authorities delivered an order to Waqf Council chairman Sheikh Abdul-Athim Salhab on Sunday, banning him from entry to the sacred site for 40 consecutive days.

Salhab had previously been banned for an entire week, following his release from Israeli custody last week.

Dibs noted that Sheikh Najeh Bkerat, the deputy director of Muslim Endowments and Al-Aqsa Affairs, was also banned from al-Aqsa Mosque for four months. 

Along with other top Waqf officials, Salhab was detained by Israeli forces as a result of playing an important role in the reopening of the al-Rahma Gate (Gate of Mercy) prayer area.

Prayer area of the al-Rahma Gate was closed on February 25 upon an order by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Palestinians have repeatedly warned of Israeli attempts to change the status quo of the al-Aqsa compound, the third holiest site in Islam.