March 23, 2019

Temple Mount Temporarily Closed After Palestinian Firebombing

Photo from Pixabay.

The Temple Mount is being closed down until March 13 due to a Palestinian firebomb attack on March 12.

The Jerusalem Post reports that a Molotov cocktail was thrown at an Israeli police station close to the Temple Mount, mildly injuring one Israeli police officer from smoke inhalation. Ten people were arrested in connection to the attack; three of them are reportedly Palestinians.

The attack prompted Israeli police to close down the Temple Mount, resulting in Palestinian riots.

Bassem Abu Labda, an official from Jordan’s Jerusalem Islamic Waqf, denied reports that there had been a Molotov cocktail. Hamas called for Palestinians to “defy the ‘Israeli’ occupation’s decision to close it and impose the will of the worshipers to enter and exit the mosque when they want”; Palestinian Authority spokesman Yusef al-Mahmoud said that Israel was attempting “to control al-Aqsa Mosque and obliterate the Arab features of Jerusalem.”

These latest tensions at the Temple Mount come as Israel and Jordan are in conflict over what’s being known as the “Golden Gate crisis,” as Jordan re-opened the Gate of Mercy site at the Temple Mount in February despite Israel’s attempts to keep it closed. Israel is accusing Jordan of trying to build another mosque there.