Mount Temple Crisis: “Our people achieved a historic victory over Israel, its army and its government.” The Hamas movement announced Thursday morning the Israeli move to remove the “bridge of cameras” and fences from the entrance to the Temple Mount compound. The Fatah movement also praised the move and said in a statement that “the great victory in Al-Aqsa came from the Palestinian heroes in Jerusalem and the political leadership headed by Abu Mazen and the Fatah movement.”
This morning, Muslim leaders and Waqf members will gather in Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas’ (Abu Mazen) office for a meeting in which they will decide whether to restore the situation to its previous state and to call on worshippers to return to the mosque, or continue the struggle. Throughout the crisis, the Palestinian Authority and the Waqf demanded that Israel restores the situation on the Temple Mount, as it was before the terror attack at the site that claimed the lives of two police officers.
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Israel not only acquiesced to demands by the Muslim worshippers and leaders of the Arab world to remove the metal detectors earlier this week, but it also removed the camera scaffoldings.
The cameras themselves were removed on Tuesday in line with a Security Cabinet decision.
Yesterday, the Waqf announced that worshippers would refuse to enter the site even if the metal detectors were substituted for body checks at the entrance in accordance with a demand by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said after the call for a “day of rage” that “Israel should show restraint.” Guterres appealed to all political and religious leaders, Jews and Muslims, urging them to “withdraw provocative statements and behaviors” in the context of friction in the Old City.
Guterres’s statement issued following Fatah and Hamas’s calls to residents of Judea and Samaria to confront Israel’s security forces on Friday. Guterres said that he was “particularly concerned about the risks inherent in the deterioration of the situation,” and stated that “Israel must respect the status quo in the holy places.” The Secretary-General welcomed the mediation talks between Jordan and Israel and supported the continuation of the negotiations that he will bring to the security of the worshipers and visitors in the Old City,