Pictures: 400 settlers break into Al-Aqsa Mosque to commemorate the “Destruction of the Temple”…clashes, injuries, arrests and isolations from Al-Aqsa
August 14, 2016

Dozens of settlers broke into the courtyards of Al-Aqsa Mosque during the morning and afternoon break-in sessions under the protection of Special Forces to commemorate the “Destruction of the Temple”.

The Islamic Awqaf department explained that 400 settlers broke into Al-Aqsa on Sunday in which 306 settlers broke-in during the morning session and 94 during the afternoon. Settlers were protected by occupation Special Forces and were faced with chants of “God is Great” by the worshippers who managed to enter Al-Aqsa Mosque despite all the Israeli restrictions.

The groups of settlers broke-in through Dung Gate and carried out a tour in the courtyards of Al-Aqsa before exiting from Al-Silsileh Gate. While exiting, they performed their religious rituals near the gate and some of them performed their rituals in Al-Aqsa courtyards. The police evacuated several settlers after Al-Aqsa guards complained about their provocative behavior.

Clashes…injuries…arrests

During the morning hours and while settlers were breaking-in, the police and Special Forces assaulted and severely beat the worshippers near the courtyard of Al-Qibali Mosque which led to the injury of some them who suffered multiple bruises.

The Palestinian Red Crescent explained that their crews treated 15 injuries due to beating; three were transferred to the hospital for further check-ups.

Among those injured was Naser Qos, head of Prisoner’s Club in Jerusalem, and his son Jihad.

The occupation police arrested Taha Shawahneh and Asala Hajir.  After detaining them for several hours, they were handed orders isolating them from Al-Aqsa Mosque for two weeks.

During the settlers’ break-ins, the police evacuated many youths and children from the courtyards.

Restrictions

The occupation police imposed restrictions on the entrance of worshippers (men and women) to Al-Aqsa Mosque since Saturday afternoon and detained their IDs before entering; same procedures were applied until Sunday afternoon.

Worshippers explained to Wadi Hilweh Information Center that the police stationed at Al-Aqsa Gates from the Dawn Prayer until the Afternoon Prayer prevented many young men and children from entering Al-Aqsa and allowed only a few to enter after leaving their IDs at the gates.

On the other hand, many settlers performed their prayers in the early morning hours outside Al-Aqsa gates; they were protected by Special Forces.

The police closed Al-Mathara Gate until 10 a.m. and also established iron barriers on the other gates.

Settlers launched marches on Saturday night that started from West Jerusalem towards the streets of East Jerusalem and reaching Al-Buraq Square during which the police closed several streets. Settlers called to accelerate the process of building the alleged temple on top of Al-Aqsa and impose full sovereignty over it.