Israeli authorities have banned Deputy Secretary of the Fatah movement, Shadi Mutwir, from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound for six months, according to the Fatah spokesperson in occupied East Jerusalem.
Rafaat Elayyan condemned the decision saying it was a sign that Israel intended to commit further “folly” in the Al-Aqsa compound in coming weeks, ahead of the Jewish holidays of Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur.
He urged Palestinians to continue to visit the Al-Aqsa Mosque in the Old City of East Jerusalem, in spite of a spike in violence in the past week which has led to the killing of seven Palestinians and one Jordanian by Israeli forces, most of whom the Israeli army claimed were attempting to carry out attacks.
Israel bans Fatah deputy secretary from Al-Aqsa Mosque compound for 6 months https://t.co/36iTw1LINK
— Ben White (@benabyad) September 20, 2016
Elayyan said that Israel was trying to escalate tensions by increasing “executions” in Jerusalem and Hebron, the occupied West Bank district which has seen the bulk of deaths in the past five days.
He also said that the international community’s silence legitimized Israeli violations against Palestinians.
In past months, Israeli authorities have also repeatedly cracked down on employees of Al-Aqsa, detaining, summoning, and banning 21 Palestinian employees in the space of 10 days in August.