World Bulletin/News Desk
Israeli police detained on Wednesday the Palestinians' top Muslim religious leader from his Jerusalem home, a day after Israeli soldiers attacked Palestinians outside of al-Aqsa mosque.
Israeli authorities later released Hussein.
Hussein's family told Turkish press that Hussein was released, however the case against him remained under investigation.
Sheikh Mohammad Hussein, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, serves under the Palestinian Authority which exercises limited rule in the Israeli-occupied West Bank as well as neighbouring Jordan, long a custodian over Jerusalem's Muslim holy places.
Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said Hussein was detained to answer questions about his connection to a "public disturbance" on Tuesday at a compound that houses al-Aqsa mosque and overlooks Judaism's Western Wall.
The incident began, Rosenfeld claimed, when Israeli police detained an Arab who wanted to enter the plaza but refused to present his identification card.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas condemned the detention and called for Hussein's immediate release.
"His arrest was a flagrant challenge to the freedom of worship," Abbas said in a statement on the official Palestinian WAFA news agency.
The attacke coincided with Israel's celebration of "Jerusalem Day", when it marks the anniversary of its capture of East Jerusalem in the 1967 Middle East war.
Palestinians regard visits by Israeli worshippers to the compound as a provocation.
Israel annexed East Jerusalem after the war and considers all of the city its capital, a claim that has not won international recognition. Palestinians want East Jerusalem as the capital of the independent state they seek in the occupied West Bank and in the Gaza Strip.
In connection with “Jerusalem Day,” Israeli security forces prohibited Palestinians from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem.
Israeli soldiers wounded 5 Palestinians on Wednesday as they prevented them from entering Al-Aqsa Mosque.
According to local sources, 5 Palestinians were wounded in the clash with Israeli soldiers blocking Muslims' entry with barricades in front of Al-Aqsa.
Muslims who could not enter their place of worship prayed their noon prayers outside the entrance doors of the mosque in protest.
Sheik Abdulazim Salhad, who is responsible for the Al-Aqsa Mosque Foundation, stated that “Yesterday 150 and today 174 extreme right-wing Jews entered the Al-Aqsa. When 6 Palestinians opposed, the Israeli police clubbed and arrested them.”
Reminding that Jerusalem Mufti Sheikh Muhammad Hussein was detained by Israeli troops this morning for protesting by remaining within the building, Salhab said, "At 4 p.m., Jews will begin a public walk in the city. Muslim shopkeepers are closing their shops in order to avoid being attacked.
“Israel does what it wants, ignoring that we have a foundation,” Sheikh Salhab added.
Last Mod: 08 Mayıs 2013, 22:37