Summoning the director of Al-Aqsa and its “Imam”…restrictions on the entrance of worshippers…clashes and arrests
March 18, 2020

The occupation forces stressed their presence and were deployed at the gates of Al-Aqsa Mosque and in the Old City of Jerusalem and the city's neighborhoods, and checked the identities of worshipers at the gates of Al-Aqsa and threatened to impose financial fines on them in the event of non-compliance with the conditions of the Israeli Ministry of Health "to stay away from each other and not to gather". The occupation intelligence also summoned the director of Al-Aqsa Mosque, Sheikh Omar Kiswani, and the “Imam”of Al-Aqsa, Amer Abdeen, for investigation at Al-Qishleh police station.

Violent clashes broke out in the evening in the village of Issawiya, and the occupation forces carried out arrests from Al-Tur and Silwan.

Al-Aqsa Mosque

The worshipers explained that the occupation police checked their identities at the gates of Al-Aqsa, and examined "if they are under home quarantine," and threatened to impose fines if more than 10 people gathered in the courtyards or during the prayer, and took pictures of the worshipers.

The intelligence services also summoned Sheikh Omar Kiswani to Al-Qishleh and asked him about the preventive measures taken at Al-Aqsa Mosque to prevent corona virus.

Sheikh Kiswani stressed on the need to adhere to the instructions and recommendations of the World Health Organization for the prevention of corona virus.

He also stressed the necessity of leaving a distance between the worshipers in Al-Aqsa courtyards, as Al-Aqsa as a whole is a mosque, in order to preserve the health of the worshipers coming to Al-Aqsa from the spread of the dangerous virus.

Sheikh Kiswani confirmed that the Islamic Endowments Department is continuously sterilizing and sanitizing the entire mosque.

The police expelled the “Imam” of Al-Aqsa Mosque, Amer Abdeen, from Al-Aqsa for one day, after summoning him for investigation.

Issawiya

The occupation forces stormed the village of Issawiya several times, and carried out various arrests and assaults on the residents.

The residents explained that the occupation forces stormed the village in the afternoon hours, and arrested the boy, Majd Mahmoud. After about an hour, the forces arrested the two young men, Mohammad Abu Rayaleh and Abdel Nasser, searched them and then arrested them.

In the evening hours, the Israeli occupation forces stormed Obeid neighborhood, assaulted the residents, randomly and heavilyfired sound grenadesand rubber bullets, and arrested Zayed Ajlouni, after beating him.

The forces also arrested 3 young men from Abu Rayaleh neighborhood, including: Rashad Abu Rayaleh and Musa Abu Rayaleh.

The judge postponed the release of Mohamed Dari for one day, and decided to release Karim Obeid, on condition of house-arrest for 5 days and a cash guarantee of 750 shekels.

Silwan

The occupation forces stormed the neighborhood of Al-Thori in Silwan, and warned the locals from gathering as a preventive measure from the virus. Verbal altercations and clashes using hands broke out between the locals and the forces which arrested the boy Amir Shweiki.

They also arrested Yazan Rajabi and Mohammad Gheith from the village, and extended their arrest until Friday.

Al-Tur

The occupation forces arrested a young man after assaulting and severely beating him.

Court hearings

Regarding the procedures followed in the courts, lawyer Mohammad Mahmoud explained that the sessions were held on Thursday without the captive being brought to the court. He was contacted during his detention in Al-Maskobyeh via phone, and was placed on speakers inside the hall. The captive completely heard his hearing, which was translated by a translator, and he was able to make any inquiries directly over the phone during the session.

Lawyer Mahmoud added that they allowed him to attend the session in court, along with the lawyer, the translator, and a member of the captive’s family, the judge, the clerk, and the Public Prosecution, as part of the emergency procedures followed to prevent the spread of Corona virus.