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Jews should be able to pray at al-Aqsa: Israeli minister

Al-Aqsa is a landmark site in Islam [Silwan]

Date of publication: 14 August, 2019

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Israel's public security minister said Jews should be allowed to pray at al-Aqsa Mosque, just days after Israeli forces stormed the Muslim religious compound.

Israel’s public security minister Gilad Erdan said Israel should push to change the status quo at al-Aqsa Mosque to allow Jewish prayer to take place.

“I think there is an injustice in the status quo that has existed since ’67,” Gilad Erdan told Israel’s Radio 90. “We need to work to change it so in the future Jews, with the help of God, can pray at the Temple Mount.”

After Israel won the war in 1967, it started its occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

As part of a post-war agreement Jerusalem’s Muslim and Christian holy sites, including al-Aqsa Mosque, have remained under the administration of the Islamic endowment, known in Arabic as the Waqf, under what is known as the status quo agreement.

He claimed such an outrageous proposition needs to be carried out through diplomatic channels.

“This needs to be achieved by diplomatic agreements and not by force,” Erdan said.

He made these comments just days after Israeli forces stormed al-Aqsa Mosque during Eid al-Adha prayers, injuring dozens.

Jordan’s foreign ministry lambasted Erdan’s comments, saying there will be “serious consequences” if Israel seriously considers such a move.

Israel’s Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz since responded to the Jordanian statement in defence of Erdan.

“It is Minister Erdan’s right to put a suggestion on the table for discussion,” Katz told Israel’s Kan public radio. “He didn’t force it but rather set it down. But the sovereignty is the State of Israel’s.”

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