United Nations official calls for de-escalation in tension over Al-Aqsa Mosque

United Nations official calls for de-escalation in tension over Al-Aqsa Mosque

Muslims have rioted in Jerusalem's Old City for several days, protesting increased security measures implemented by Israel at the Temple Mount following the terror attack that killed two Israeli police officers near the holy site on July 14.

Abbas said the moves are violating global legitimacy, according to the official Palestinian News Agency (WAFA).

Palestinian factions have called for marches all over the West Bank on Wednesday in protest against the Israeli security procedures at al-Aqsa mosque.

A Palestinian carried out a car-ramming attack near the city of Hebron in the occupied West Bank on Tuesday, lightly wounding two Israeli soldiers before being shot dead, officials said.

Police had closed the Temple Mount on Friday in the wake of an attack that killed two Israel Police officers. It is the holiest site in Judaism and the nearby Western Wall, a remnant of one of the temples, is the holiest place where Jews can pray. The Israeli authorities later made a decision to close down Al Aqsa Mosque, causing Muslims unable to perform Friday prayers.

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"We call for an end to all the Zionist measures and for the extremist government to take its hands off the blessed Al Aqsa mosque", it said.

Instructed by Islamist groups and Muslim religious authority managing the Temple Mount, Waqf, Muslims refused to go through metal detectors and prayed outside. The police pursued and killed the assailants. The police want the metal detectors to stay put. During that period, Israeli forces have killed more than 255 Palestinians, a lot of them said by Israel to be attackers while others were killed in clashes with Israeli forces.

Israeli police have reopened access to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem to Jewish visitors, which was restricted earlier on Wednesday, local media reported citing Jerusalem District Police Commander Maj. Proposals to change security measures at the compound have sparked controversy in the past.

Palestinians say the placement of metal detectors interrupts the status quo at the Temple Mount, which is holy to both Jews and Muslims.

Since last week's attack, tensions between Israelis and Palestinians have soared.

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