Islamic scholars have expressed concern about Israel’s plan to construct a building near the al-Aqsa Mosque in East al-Quds (Jerusalem), Press TV reports. “This is the awful danger that is storming the al-Aqsa,” Islamic heritage researcher Abdel Razek Matani said in East al-Quds on Monday. A 600-year-old Islamic building near the mosque was recently demolished by the Israelis, who are planning to construct a building at the site. Sheikh Ekrema Sabri, the Imam of the al-Aqsa Mosque, stated that the site should remain Islamic. “The aggression on the Islamic endowments amounts to an aggression on al-Aqsa, and towards Muslims. This aggression will not [cancel out] Islamic rights there, and the site will remain Islamic,” Sabri said. Sheikh Raed Salah, the leader of the Islamic Movement of Palestine, also stated that these actions could lead to another Palestinian Intifada.
“The Israeli occupation, with its aggression, will [lead to] a third Palestinian Intifada,” he said.The presence and continued expansion of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestine has created a major obstacle for the efforts to establish peace in the Middle East. More than half a million Israelis live in over 120 illegal settlements built since Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East al-Quds in 1967. The UN and most countries regard the Israeli settlements as illegal because the territories were captured by Israel in a war in 1967 and are hence subject to the Geneva Convention, which forbids construction on occupied lands. NT/HGL