Reports from the Palestinian Red Crescent show that well over 40 Palestinians have seriously been injured over this Friday’s surge by forces of Israel to the Al-Aqsa mosque
The Palestinian Red Crescent said this Friday that at least 42 Palestinians were badly injured following a surge by Israeli police forces on the Al-Aqsa Mosque. The violent attack took place in the early hours of the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan.
According to eyewitnesses, Israeli police even fired tear gas and rubber bullets toward Palestinian worshippers.
Israel claimed that “for the past hour, the site has been quiet and [Muslim] worshippers are safely entering [the compound].” However, tensions seem to remain high at the site in the heart of Jerusalem’s old city of Hebron.
The starting point for this volatile situation in East Jerusalem dates back to almost two weeks ago. Since then, Israeli forces have attacked and injured more than 300 Palestinians only at the Al-Aqsa compound.
However, the Jerusalem Islamic Waqf confirms that about 3,700 Israeli settlers dared to violate the conventions and kind of break into the holy mosque compound over the past week.
This has given rise to the idea that maybe Israel is looking for dividing the Mosque to create a private space for the Jews to do their worship.
Denying the truth
Israel’s foreign minister Yair Lapid, however, said this week that his government doesn’t have any plan whatsoever to divide the compound.
But it is worth asking here that if Lapid is saying the truth, then why Palestinians are still facing tough restrictions on visiting the Al-Aqsa mosque?
The irony is that Israeli forces have been allowing only certain age groups of Palestinians to enter the Mosque during Ramadan.
This means Israel has made it virtually impossible for a good lot of Palestinians who live only a few miles away from East Jerusalem to visit the Mosque. Israeli officials claim that imposing such harsh restrictions is necessary to ensure the security of the compound.
The real fear of Palestinians emanates from the fact that Israeli officials have lately been increasing the building of new settlements in the illegally occupied West Bank city of Hebron.
To make matters worse, it was on this past Thursday that Israel’s High Court issued an order allowing for the construction of a new 31-unit six-story apartment complex for new Israeli settlers in the city center.
In a statement applauding the court’s decision, the Israeli Peace Now activist group said in a statement that “this new construction in Hebron is the first in twenty years that is being carried out inside the Palestinian city, in a compound that has been occupied by the army for years as a military base.”
To read between the lines, Hebron is a Palestinian city in the southern West Bank, 30 kilometers (19 mi) south of Jerusalem.
The city is home to nearly 200,000 Palestinian men, women, and children, and also about 700 Jews inhabit there.
Despite the Palestinian-majority of the city’s population, however, they are always under pressure from Israeli police forces. They are constantly subject to checkpoints and travel bans.