Posted by Turkse Media
Jul 21, 2017
Turkish NGOs slam Israeli restrictions at Al-Aqsa
Turkish groups nationwide protest Israeli restrictions on Palestinian worshippers at Al-Aqsa Mosque
Nongovernmental organizations from across Turkey on Friday condemned Israel for restricting Palestinians’ entry to Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque and held rallies in solidarity with Muslim worshippers.
Dozens of Palestinians were injured on Friday after fresh clashes broke out with Israeli police outside the mosque, health officials said.
Last Sunday, protests broke out after the mosque’s leadership spoke out against metal detectors installed at the site following a deadly shootout last week.
The new security measures led to a wave of anger among Palestinians, who called for the immediate removal of the metal detectors. Israel defended the detectors, saying they were no different from security measures at other holy sites around the world.
The Anatolia Youth Association (AGD) held several protests after Friday prayers in various provinces and city centers, including in the southeastern Diyarbakir province, Aegean Izmir province, northern Trabzon province, and Mediterranean Antalya province.
The AGD and Humanitarian Aid Foundation (IHH) also held gatherings at Ankara’s Hacibayram Mosque.
Demonstrations are expected to continue in solidarity with Palestinians throughout Turkey over the weekend.
On Thursday President Recep Tayyip Erdogan discussed with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas the growing tensions in Jerusalem between Palestinians and Israelis.
“Any restriction on Muslims entering Al-Aqsa Mosque is unacceptable,” Erdogan told Abbas.
The president later called his Israeli counterpart Reuven Rivlin and voiced regret over the loss of life amid the friction between the two groups, according to a Turkish presidential source.
Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Six-Day War. It later annexed the city in 1980, claiming all of Jerusalem as the Jewish state’s capital — a move not recognized by the international community.
Sacred to Muslims, Jews, and Christians, Jerusalem is home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the third-holiest site in Islam.
Sacred to Muslims, Jews, and Christians, Jerusalem city is home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock, which for Muslims represents the world’s third-holiest site after the holy cities of Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia.
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