Jewish extremists storm Al-Aqsa compound following Gaza ceasefire
A group of Jewish extremists stormed Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque compound on Sunday morning under the protection of Israeli police, two days after a ceasefire was announced in the Gaza Strip.
Extremists have regularly stormed the mosque's compound before but this was the first time that they had forced their way into the holy site for three weeks.
Israeli police deployed in force around the Al-Aqsa Mosque’s gates as the settlers stormed the compound.
An official of the Jerusalem Islamic Waqf (Religious Endowment), which administers the compound, told the New Arab’s Arabic-language service on Sunday morning that the situation was "dangerous" as Jewish extremists continued to enter the mosque.
Jewish extremist groups claim a "right" to the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, which they refer to as the Temple Mount. Some extremists wish to demolish the mosque and build a Jewish temple on its site.
The official said that since the early hours of Sunday morning, Israeli police had prevented the entry of Muslim worshippers into the compound, beating some of them in order to stop them going in.
Israeli police had also attacked the Waqf mosque guards, detaining one of them, he added.
Approximately 125 extremists entered the mosque according to Waqf officials.
Israel’s assault on the Gaza Strip, which ended on Friday and claimed 231 Palestinian lives, began after Hamas launched rockets at Israel in response to an attack by Israeli police on Palestinian worshippers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque which injured hundreds of people.
On Saturday, Farid Assaf of the Federation of Temple Organizations extremist group announced that the mosque would be stormed in response to the Gaza ceasefire, which Palestinians have celebrated as a victory.
"On Sunday morning at 7:00, we will know if we have lost the war," 48News reported him as saying.