World Bulletin/News Desk
Dozens of Jewish settlers backed by Israeli police stormed the Aqsa Mosque compound in the city of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) on Thursday, where they performed several Talmudic rituals.
According to Sheikh Azzam Khatib, religious endowments (Awqaf) director in Jerusalem, two groups of settlers entered the compound accompanied by Israeli police.
Witnesses said that the settlers had performed Jewish religious rituals after Israeli police forcefully expelled Aqsa Mosque guards with the ostensible aim of averting violent confrontations with Jewish extremists.
Israeli police also reportedly arrested two young men from inside the mosque.
Before the settlers' arrival, Israeli Special Forces were deployed in the area. They surrounded Palestinian students in the mosque compound and checked their identification cards.
In recent weeks, groups of Jewish settlers, often accompanied by Israeli security forces, have entered the Aqsa Mosque complex – considered Islam's third holiest site – on an almost daily basis.
The frequent violations anger Palestinian Muslims and occasionally lead to violent clashes in the mosque compound.
Jews refer to Al-Aqsa as the "Temple Mount," claiming the area was the site of two prominent Jewish temples in ancient times.Last Mod: 10 Ekim 2013, 14:02