World Bulletin / News Desk
The Turkish president said Monday Israel was heading towards isolation because of measures imposed at the Al-Aqsa compound in East Jerusalem.
Speaking at a press conference at Ankara Esenboga airport while returning from a two-day visit to the Gulf region, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Israel's restrictions at Al-Aqsa Mosque were unacceptable.
"Equating the Muslims who come for worship with terrorists is a great eclipse of reason," Erdogan stressed.
These steps that ignore Muslims' right to worship and ignore the holiness of Al-Aqsa increase the tension even more, he said.
He added: "Israel, with its disregard for the rule of law, not only harms itself but the whole region."
Anger has spilled across the West Bank since last week when Israel shut East Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque, venerated by Muslims and Jews -- who call the site Temple Mount -- following a deadly shootout.
The mosque was reopened after two days, with Israel installing metal detectors and cameras at its gates.
Three Palestinians were killed on Friday in protests against the Israeli measures around the holy site. Three Israelis were also killed in an attack in a settlement in the West Bank.
Israel refused to remove the detectors, claiming the security measures were similar to procedures taken at other holy sites around the world.
The city of Jerusalem is sacred to members of all three Abrahamic faiths -- Muslims, Jews and Christians -- and the Al-Aqsa Mosque represents the Islamic world's third-holiest site.
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