Scores of Israeli settlers have stormed the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the occupied Old City of East Jerusalem al-Quds under the strict protection of the regime’s security forces.
The Department of Islamic Endowments in Jerusalem al-Quds said in a statement, carried by Palestine's official WAFA news agency, that 113 Israeli settlers stormed the compound from the Moroccan Gate (Bab al-Magharib) at around 11:00 a.m. on Thursday.
The settlers began their provocative tour of the compound under the full protection of Israeli soldiers. Two intelligent officers of the Israeli regime also entered the compound along with the settlers, the statement further said.
Israeli forces stationed at al-Aqsa gates imposed restrictions on Palestinian worshipers’ access to the mosque, demanded their ID cards, frisked them and searched their bags, the statement said.
Hardline Israeli legislators and extremist settlers regularly storm the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the occupied city, a provocative move that infuriates Palestinians.
The al-Aqsa Mosque compound sits just above the Western Wall plaza and houses both the Dome of the Rock and the al-Aqsa Mosque.
According to an agreement signed between Israel and the Jordanian government after Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem al-Quds in 1967, non-Muslim worship at the compound is prohibited.
The number of Israeli lawmakers who storm the holy compound has increased after the regime's prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided in July 2018 to permit such visits once every three months.
Many of the Knesset members are right-wing extremists, who support the demolition of the Islamic site in order to build a Jewish temple instead.
Palestinians want the occupied West Bank as part of their future independent state with East Jerusalem al-Quds as the capital of their future sovereign state.
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