The United Arab List, an Arab political party and a part of the ruling coalition regime in Israel, has stressed that the al-Aqsa Mosque is “solely the property of Muslims”, warning of renewed escalation after Israeli settlers stormed the Muslim holy site.
“The Al-Aqsa Mosque, in its 144 dunams, is solely the property of Muslims, and no one else has any right to it,” the United Arab List said in a joint statement with its parent organization, the Islamic Movement.
The al-Aqsa Mosque compound, located in the Israeli-occupied Old City of Jerusalem al-Quds, is a flashpoint holy Islamic site. The location of the compound, known to Jews as the Temple Mount, is the holiest site in Judaism. The mosque is Islam’s third holiest site after Masjid al-Haram in Mecca and Masjid al-Nabawi in Medina, Saudi Arabia.
On Sunday, over 1,500 settlers stormed the mosque to mark a Jewish holiday. During the aggression, Israeli forces fired tear gas and stun grenades at Palestinian worshipers, and arrested a number of them.
The Israeli cabinet led by extremist prime minister Naftali Bennett supported the raid.
The United Arab List denounced the provocations, saying Israeli authorities “allowed officials and Knesset members to storm al-Aqsa, perform prayers, perform religious rituals, and declaimed the Israeli national anthem Hatikva in the courtyards of the blessed al-Aqsa Mosque”.
The party warned that such acts could lead to renewed escalation between Israelis and Palestinians.
“The events that may result from it could inflame the situation in al-Quds and the entire region, leading to a catastrophic religious war,” it said.
Sunday’s incident, which took place as Muslims set to celebrate Eid al-Adha on Tuesday, and which came on the eve of the Muslim’s annual Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca, drew condemnation from the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas and the Palestinian Authority as well as several countries, including Iran, Egypt, Turkey, and Jordan.
Amman, the custodian of the holy sites at the al-Aqsa Mosque compound, sent Israel a formal letter of protest following the aggression, asserting its control over the site.
“The Israeli actions against the mosque are unacceptable and condemnable. They represent a violation of the historical and legal status quo, international law, and Israel’s obligations as an occupying power in East al-Quds,” Jordanian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Daifullah Fayez said in a statement.