Riyad Mansour, the Palestinian ambassador to the United Nations, condemned Israeli action at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in a press conference on Wednesday, saying it is the “exclusive right of the Palestinian Muslims” to practise their religious traditions there.
“It is the right of the Palestinian Muslim worshippers to exercise their religious duties and prayers in this holy month of Ramadan and in any other time in this holy Aqsa Mosque,” Mansour said.
“The Israeli occupying authority has no right whatsoever to tell people when to pray and when not to pray.”
Arab League holds emergency meeting, condemns Israeli action
The Arab League – a regional organisation of 22 member countries – is holding an emergency meeting on the raids at Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Hossam Zaki, the league’s assistant secretary general, told Al Jazeera: “We lay the blame totally and squarely on the Israeli government.”
“We are going to work, politically and diplomatically, to expose what Israel has been doing,” he continued.
“It’s not that we need another excuse from the Israeli occupation forces to storm in the Al-Aqsa Mosque. They never run out of excuses. They always tell you that there will be youth barricading, amassing guns and so on. We’ve heard it so many times. It is almost irrelevant at this point. This is a government that is bent on harming the Palestinian population.”
Raids on Al-Aqsa ‘a serious provocation’
Mustafa Barghouti, the general secretary of the Palestinian National Initiative, called the latest violence at the Al-Aqsa Mosque a “very serious provocation that will definitely lead to an escalation”.
“And maybe that’s what the Israeli government wants,” he told Al Jazeera. “They want to distract attention from their internal divisions, from the demonstrations that are taking place inside Israel against this government, and they want to drag this whole region into an explosion.”
Barghouti blamed the violence, in part, on the appointment of Itamar Ben-Gvir as Israel’s minister of national security: “This Israeli government is using religion for nationalist causes.”
“This is unprecedented that the mosque would be attacked twice in the same day, people would be injured, elderly people would be attacked, children, women in the morning. And now preventing medical teams from reaching them,” he said..
World Opinins – Agencies