Jordan condemns Israeli Minister’s call to enable Jewish prayer on Temple Mount  

August 15, 2019 by Aryeh Savir - TPS
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Jordan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Wednesday condemned statements by Israeli Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan who called for a change of the status quo on the Temple Mount that would enable Jews to pray at the holy site.

Dome of the Rock Photo by Esty Dziubov/TPS

The Jordanian Ministry’s Spokesperson, Sufian al-Qudah, voiced the Hashemite Kingdom’s “absolute rejection of such statements,” warning that “any attempt to change the historical and legal status quo will lead to severe consequences.”

Al-Qudah stressed that Israel “as an occupying power, must abide by its obligations under international law and international humanitarian law.”

He said that Jordan sent a letter of objection to Israel through diplomatic channels.

Erdan stated during an interview with Israel’s 90fm radio on Tuesday that the “unjust” status quo needs to be changed on the Temple Mount so that Jews can pray “in the future” on the Temple Mount, the holiest site to the Jews and only the third holiest site to Islam.

However, when asked, he refused to say what he exactly had in mind.

Jews are currently banned from praying on the Temple Mount and are forcefully removed by police if they are caught reciting even a verse. The Jordanian Muslim Waqf trails after Jews visiting the holy site to ensure they display no signs of worship.

However, a record number of Jews ascended to the Temple Mount on Sunday during the Tisha B’Av day of mourning, despite limitation set by the police and despite the Muslims’ violence.

A total of 1,729 Jews visited the holy site during the Jewish national day of mourning commemorating the destruction of two temples in a time frame of only two hours. This record number consists of a 20% increase over last year’s 1,440 visits which took place over a time span of four and a half hours.

In 2015, only 300 Jews visited the Temple Mount on Tisha B’Av.

This record was set despite limitations set by the police on the visits, and despite Muslim attempts to prevent Jews from visiting the site.

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