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Israeli troops, extremists storm al-Aqsa mosque, force out Muslim worshipers

Palestinian worshippers perform Taraweeh prayers at the beginning of the holy fasting month of Ramadan, at the al-Aqsa mosque in al-Quds, on March 22, 2023. (Photo by Flash90)

Muslim worshipers have been forced out of the sacred al-Aqsa mosque as Israeli forces and extremists stormed the vicinity of the mosque on the fourth day of the Holy month of Ramadan.

Video footage circulating online showed that Israeli soldiers and extremist illegal settlers forced Muslims from the holy place late on Sunday.

The large groups of Israeli radicals – whose incursion on Sunday came during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan – were under Israeli forces’ protection.

According to Wafa news agency, the Palestinian foreign ministry called for forcing Israel to comply with its commitments and “halt violations of holy sites in al-Quds, including al-Aqsa Mosque, before it is too late.”

The ministry termed the Israeli assault on worshipers inside al-Aqsa as “a serious escalation” and held Tel Aviv fully responsible for its consequences.

For Muslims, al-Aqsa represents the world’s third-holiest site.

This violence comes after the Israeli police approved the storming of al-Aqsa at the instruction of far-right Israeli minister Itamar Ben-Gvir.

On Thursday, the first day of Ramadan, almost 300 extremists raided the compound.

The head of the Islamic Supreme Committee in al-Quds, Sheikh Ekrama Sabri, warned of a campaign against the mosque.

He said that the campaign began late on Saturday with the storming and desecration of the al-Qibli prayer hall, urging a rally around al-Aqsa and for a stronger defense of the site.

Sheikh Sabri pointed out that the Israeli soldiers are trying to remove the worshipers from the holy site to pave the way in front of Israeli illegal settlers to storm the mosque and carry out their acts of violence and desecration.

Many Palestinians have called on worshipers to break their fast during Ramadan inside the courtyards of al-Aqsa Mosque and perform prayers in the mosque.

One of their goals is to intensify the presence of Palestinians in the mosque during the holy month to reassert their right to al-Aqsa Mosque and the city of al-Quds, in light of recurrent raids by settlers.

In previous years, clashes erupted between Israeli forces and Palestinians during Ramadan, particularly around the al-Aqsa Mosque compound, Islam’s third holiest site.

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