Issuing Sheikh Salhab a fine…storming Bab Al-Rahma chapel under the pretext of “not abiding by the preventive measures from the Coronavirus”
March 21, 2020



On Saturday evening, the occupation authorities issued a fine to the President of the Islamic Endowments Council, Sheikh Abdel-Azim Salhab, and stormed Bab Al-Rahma chapel in Al-Aqsa, and threatened to impose fines on worshipers on the pretext of "not adhering to the decisions and instructions issued to reduce the Coronavirus."

Wadi Hilweh Information Center stated that the occupation forces stormed the house of Sheikh Salhab in Beit Hanina, and handed him a fine of 5 thousand shekels, on the pretext of "not adhering to the police decisions, and allowing worshippers to enter exceeding the permitted number."

On Saturday evening, the occupation forces stormed Bab Al-Rahma chapel, and threatened to impose financial fines on the worshipers. When the worshipers left the Night Prayer, they stopped some of them and tried to issue them fines on the pretext of gathering inside the chapel, but the worshipers denied this and confirmed that they had prayed in the courtyard of the chapel.

The occupation forces also arrested Mohammad Ibrahim from Bab Hutta area.

The Islamic Endowments Department has taken over the past days the necessary measures and procedures to prevent the spread of the virus, as it closed the chapels that are covered and sanitized and cleaned the courtyards of Al-Aqsa in general and in the prayer areas in particular, in addition to the young men present in the squares who provide worshipers with sanitizing gel to clean their hands before and after the prayers. Al-Aqsa directorate also published several guidelines for worshipers arriving at Al-Aqsa, and despite that, the occupation authorities continue to interfere with the mosque’s affairs by closing it on Friday before the Friday Noon prayers, preventing worshipers from entering it. The number of worshipers that performed the Noon Prayer was estimated to be only 500 worshipers, as the forces closed most of its gates except for “Hutta, Al-Majles and Al-Silsileh” gates.The forces suppressed everyone who prayed at the gates of Al-Aqsa or in the streets of Jerusalem, and summoned the director of Al-Aqsa Sheikh Omar Al-Kiswani and banned him and one of the “Imams” from entering the mosque. Police officers took pictures of worshipers who were keen on leaving a distance between each other, and at the same time the occupation authorities continue to allow settlers and tourists to storm Al-Aqsa through Dung Gate which is controlled by the occupation forces since the occupation of Jerusalem.

Clashes broke out on Saturday evening, in Obeid neighborhood in the village of Issawiya, and the forces randomly fired sound grenades and rubber bullets.