Bennett Keeps Har HaBayis Open to Jews After Clashes

Israeli border police offices guard at the entrance to Har HaBayis. (Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90)

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett held a situation assessment on Sunday, Tishah B’Av, following unrest at Har HaBayis.

The Prime Minister’s office reported that he instructed Public Security Minister Omer Bar-Lev and Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai to allow continued Jewish visits to Har HaBayis.

It should be noted that these days, according to leading Poskim, one is forbidden to enter Har HaBayis.

On Sunday, several hundred Jews visited Har HaBayis, under police security. The visit sparked clashes between Jews and Muslims present. Palestinians reported that police had raided the compound and made several arrests. There was no confirmation of the report from Israel Police.

Some 1,200 police and Border Police personnel were deployed to secure tefillos at the Kosel and those on Har HaBayis.

Palestinian sources also reported that the police were keeping Waqf officials out of the Har HaBayis compound. Hamas called on its people to go to Al-Aqsa Mosque and defend the Old City, apparently in an attempt to inflame tensions.

“We are calling on our people to march to Jerusalem, be present in the alleyways of the Old City,” Hamas said.

Meanwhile, even before the onset of Tishah B’Av, the International Union of Muslim Scholars, led by radical cleric Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, began inciting against Jewish visits to Har HaBayis, alleging that “the occupying settlers are trying to attack us.”

“We condemn the repeated provocations, as well as the continuance of attacks by the radicals against Al-Aqsa Mosque,” Qaradawi said.

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