Decision to allow silent prayer on Temple Mount overturned

October 10, 2021 by Aryeh Savir - TPS
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The Jerusalem District Court accepted on Friday the State’s appeal on the decision by the Magistrate’s Court to allow “silent prayers” for Jews on the Temple Mount.

Jews visit the Temple Mount compound, site of the Al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem’s Old City, during the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, Oct. 8, 2017. Photo by Yaakov Lederman/Flash90.

On Tuesday, Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court Justice Bilha Yahalom ruled that silent prayer on the Temple Mount does not violate the police’s guidelines on the issue and is permissible.

Spokesperson of the Jordanian Ministry of Foreign affairs Haitham Abu Alfoul stated on Wednesday that the court’s decision is “null” and has no legal effect.

He claimed that the court’s ruling is a “flagrant violation of international legitimacy” pertinent to Jerusalem and oversteps the “historical and legal” status quo in the al-Aqsa Mosque.

“The 144-dunum al-Aqsa Mosque is a strictly place of worship for Muslims” and that the Jordanian-run Jerusalem Waqf is the “sole body legally responsible for managing the affairs of the mosque.”

The Police appealed the Magistrate’s Court’s decision on Friday, and Minister of Public Security Omer Barlev warned that “a change in the existing status quo will endanger public peace and could cause a flare-up.”

In his appeal, Barlev related to the Temple Mount solely as “Al-Haram Al-Sharif,” its Muslim name.

Member of Knesset Itamar Ben-Gvir stated in response to the court’s reversal that “a district judge has no right to prevent Jews from praying on the Temple Mount and the government’s policy on the subject in recent years cannot be reversed.”

“The High Court of Justice has repeatedly ruled that Jews have the right to pray on the mountain. This is the government’s policy in recent years…the Jewish worshipers will not receive any change in the situation,” he said.

The Im Tirzu Zionist noted that only the Al-Aqsa Mosque is called Haram al-Sharif.

“The Temple Mount is the name of the entire complex, where the Temples stood, the holiest place for the Jewish people, to which Jews have been praying for thousands of years. The fact that an Israeli minister issued a statement in which he called the entire Temple Mount by that name, constitutes a complete disgrace and adoption of the Arab lie and the Arabs’ attempt to present the entire Temple Mount as sacred to Islam,” the organization stated.

Temple Mount activist Assaf Fried stated that “what began as a repentance to the justice system has now turned out to be a great disappointment.”

“It is a shame that a court in Israel declares that it only prevents Jews from praying while the Arabs do whatever they please. What in the whole world was considered anti-Semitism in Israel is accepted with desolate indifference,” he charged.

“We will continue to pray on the Temple Mount, with and without the approval of the courts until the resumption of sacrificial work and the building of the Temple,” he declared.

Jewish worshippers are currently enabled only limited access in time and space during their visits to the Temple Mount.

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, an observant Jew, has remained silent on the issue.


2 Responses to “Decision to allow silent prayer on Temple Mount overturned”
  1. Joseph Silver says:

    This action is pragmatism with Israeli authorities compelled to act to prevent threats and intimidation from Muslims turning into violence. We can blame Moshe Dayan for this when after the 1967 war he announced to the Wakf and the heads of the Supreme Muslim Council that they would be given administrative control over the Al-Aqsa compound, while the Jews would be able to visit but not pray there. This is Israel acquiescence to Islam that has reaped no reward.


    Sadly the secular Israeli judiciary has made itself into a mockery. Can there be any other country in the world where adherents of the dominant religion in that country are forbidden by law to pray on their most holy site? .

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