Sunday, October 25, 2009

Palestinians Riot in Jerusalem After Hearing Jews Planned to Visit The Al-Aqsa Mosque

Palestinians began hurling rocks and dropping heavy objects off the roof onto Israeli police in Jerusalem after a rumor spread that said Jews planned to visit the Al-Aqsa Mosque. The fighting has died down, but there were some fears that the violence could spread as this is how the second Intifada started. Hamas was blamed for inciting the unrest. And yes, you read that right; this started because of a rumor that Jews had the 'audacity' to visit a Mosque situated at the holiest site in Judaism, the Temple Mount.

Maybe it is just me, but if the Palestinians really want their own country they should take serious steps to end the religious violence, protect religious sites of other religions, and grant safe access to the believers to their respective sites; just as Israel has done.

"the confrontation between Israeli police in riot gear and rock-throwing Muslims alarmed by rumors that right-wing Jews planned to enter the site was a reminder that Jerusalem remains a cauldron of heated religious and political passions.
Police, who also used tear gas in the Jerusalem clashes, did not go into al-Aqsa mosque, situated on al-Haram al-Sharif (the Noble Sanctuary), regarded by Muslims as the third-holiest site after the cities of Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia.
Police said the violence began after Palestinians threw stones at officers on patrol in the area. Police then rushed onto the compound behind riot shields, using stun grenades and batons to repel protesters, who retreated into the mosque.

During the clash, dozens of young Arab men threw rocks, lumps of masonry and water tanks from the roofs of houses at police in the narrow alleyways around the mosque compound, which overlooks the Western Wall, Judaism's key place of prayer.

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