JERUSALEM (JTA) — Muslim worshippers attacked two Jewish men on the Temple Mount on Tuesday after the Jews bowed in prayer in violation of the visiting rules.
The Jewish men were beaten as they prostrated themselves. The Muslims clashed with police attempting to protect the Jewish visitors, who were ejected from the site.
A video of the incident posted on social media by a Palestinian news website shows dozens of Muslim worshippers punching police trying to protect the men, who are still on the ground. The police then push back.
Jewish prayer is forbidden at the site, which is holy to both Jews and Muslims. The Temple Mount is administered by Jordan’s Muslim Wakf.
At least eight Jewish visitors were removed from the Temple Mount on Tuesday (April 26, 2016) for allegedly attempting to pray. Jewish visitors were removed on Sunday and Monday for the same offense.
Jordan condemned the increase in Jewish visitors to the site, including many tourists who came to Israel for Passover. During the holiday’s intermediate days, there are expanded visiting hours for Jews at the Temple Mount, and Muslim worshippers are prevented from ascending to the Mount during certain visiting hours.
On Monday, Jordan’s media affairs minister, Mohammad al-Momani, released a statement accusing “Israeli settlers and police” of storming the Al-Aqsa Mosque. He called Israel’s actions at the site “a violation of international laws and conventions” and said it could lead to “serious consequences.”
The Prime Minister’s Office in Israel responded to the threats, saying, “There is absolutely no basis to these claims,” and that “Israel is behaving responsibly, and Jordan knows that.”
Additional security forces have been put on patrol in the Old City of Jerusalem because of increased tensions at the Temple Mount and throughout the city in the aftermath of a bus-bombing in Jerusalem last week.