Palestinians Attend Friday Prayers in Al-Aqsa Mosque despite Restrictions

Michele Moreno
August 8, 2017

Jordan's King Abdullah arrived in Ramallah Monday for talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas aimed at deepening ties and discussing "current developments in the Palestinian territories" in the wake of last month's crisis over the al-Aksa mosque compound.

Moreover, the PA fears that in view of the developments in the investigations, Netanyahu would be veering right and take steps that would make it hard to achieve an Israeli-Palestinian agreement in the near future.

The tensions were exacerbated on July 23 when an Israeli security guard shot dead two Jordanians at the Israeli embassy compound in the capital Amman.

Abdullah has strongly criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's response to the incident, and said that the latter exploited the crisis at the Amman embassy for political purposes.

The al-Aqsa mosque, which lies in the Israeli-occupied Old City of al-Quds, is a flashpoint and is Islam's third-holiest site after Mecca and Medina.

The visit came less than two weeks after the end of a standoff at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem where Israel had imposed new security measures, including metal detectors, following an attack that killed two policemen.

They refused to enter the mosque and called on worshippers to do the same until the security measures were removed-a demand the Israeli government eventually conceded. During the speech he adopted Israel's view that the Al Aqsa crisis stemmed from Palestinian incitement and mused that there may be no solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Netanyahu's removal of the metal detectors was seen by Palestinians as a victory.

The visit to Ramallah by the Jordanian leader also follows the recent shooting of two Jordanian nationals by an Israeli embassy guard after being attacked.

At a Saturday meeting at Al Husseiniya Palace with leaders of Jordan's Lower House of Parliament, King Abdullah outlined the challenges now faced regarding the Palestinian cause and Jerusalem.

In a Friday report, the Abdullah al-Hourani Center for Research and Documentation (run by the Palestine Liberation Organization) stated that 20 Palestinians - from the West Bank, Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip - had lost their lives during a flare-up of violence that first began in mid-July. He also said that Washington must agree that negotiations require a complete freeze in settlement construction, including in East Jerusalem.

Other reports by Insurance News

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