Hanin Zoabi attacked during Al Aqsa visit
Israeli soldiers attempted to attack Arab Knesset member Hanin Zoabi on Wednesday morning as she and other Arab Knesset members tried to enter the al-Aqsa mosque in occupied Jerusalem.
Troops prevented the delegation from entering the holy site, sources told al-Araby al-Jadeed, which led to a fierce altercation - during which Israeli soldiers verbally assaulted Zoabi with profanities and insults.
Hanin Zoabi, the first Arab woman to be elected to the Israeli legislative body on an Arab party's list, condemned the soldiers for what she described as their brutal attack on worshippers.
She also rounded on them for preventing Palestinians from entering, while she said they allowed ultranationalist Jews to desecrate the mosque, one of the three holiest sites in Islam.
Israeli troops also physically assaulted Adnan al-Husaini, the Palestinian Authority's minister for Jerusalem, and prevented him and his delegation from entering the mosque through Lions' Gate, one of seven gates in the ancient walls of Jerusalem's Old City.
Also hurt in the altercation were Fatah member Awad Salama, Palestinian campaigner Sabrine Oubeidat and Hatem Abdul-Qadir, another Fatah official.
"The soldiers dealt with civilians - including women - brutally," Abdul-Qadir told al-Araby. "Storming and desecrating al-Aqsa is very grave and will only aggravate and escalate the situation."