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Israel Attacks Palestinians at Al Aqsa Mosque, Injuring Dozens

20 July 2017

Grand Mufti Muhammad Hussein told reporters on Wednesday that Palestinian Muslims should all gather outside the gates of the Al-Aqsa Mosque for the weekly Friday prayer.

"We will not enter through these metal detectors", he added.

Clashes erupted outside Jerusalem's al-Aqsa mosque compound on Sunday as Israeli authorities implemented new security measures at the mosque entrance.

Two Israeli police officers were killed in a shooting Friday in Jerusalem's Old City, just outside one of the world's most important religious sites. He called for an end to the occupation and "returning Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque to Palestinian and Islamic hands, granting the Palestinian people their rights and establishing a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital".

The prime minister said he holds Israel responsible for increasing tensions over these decisions.

Local sources said that the girl, Wijdan Faris Nasser al-Jabari, was transferred to an Israeli hospital in Jerusalem for medical care. In recent years, religious opinion has shifted, and growing numbers of Jews are visiting the compound, with Israeli police and Waqf guards enforcing the no-prayer rule.

But police warned Temple Mount activists not to push the boundaries too far and said they would enforce the law, regardless of Muslims' presence on the Mount.

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Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Samri said that, after prayers ended, some of the dozens of worshippers had started throwing rocks and bottles at police officers, and dispersal means were used.

The al-Aqsa Mosque compound is a flashpoint Islamic site, which is also holy to Jews.

Earlier on Monday, there were minor clashes at the Lions Gate to the Old City, where the last week terror attack took place when three Arab Israelis shot officers Master Sgt. Kamil Shnaan and Master Sgt. Haiel Sitawe.

Muslims, however, refused to enter the site in protest at the newly-imposed security measures, including metal detectors and cameras.

Israeli media reported that security chiefs are at odds over the new devices.

Although the mosque reopened on Sunday, Netanyahu ordered the installation of metal detectors at two of the mosque's entrances.

Jordan's ruling Hashemite dynasty, with ancestry said to go back to Prophet Muhammad, derives much of its legitimacy from custodianship over the shrine. "We will stay outside the mosque until we get back the way it was taken from us", he said. Jordan's stance is that anything installed at the site must be approved by the Waqf, or Muslim administration, and can not change the status quo, said the official.

Israel Attacks Palestinians at Al Aqsa Mosque, Injuring Dozens