Jerusalem tensions over al-Aqsa Mosque turn bloody as Far Right-winger is Shot

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Right-wing Jewish activist Yehuda Glick was shot and injured at a rally in Jerusalem on Wednesday evening, Israeli police and medical sources said.

Glick was reportedly shot in his upper body at “close range” at an event outside the Menachem Begin Heritage Center in Jerusalem, where a number of Israeli members of Knesset and right-wing activists were in attendance, Israeli news site Ynet said.

Ynet also reported that Jerusalem police said the shooter was on a motorcycle at the time of the incident, though the details were still unclear.

Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld confirmed to Ma’an only that a “known right-wing activist” had been shot.

The attack was reported after a conference focused on the reconstruction of a Jewish temple on top of the al-Aqsa mosque was concluded at the center, with top right-wing Jewish officials and activists in attendance.

Member of Knesset Moshe Feiglin was quoted by Ynet as saying: “The would-be killer turned to (Glick), confirmed in Hebrew with a thick Arab accent that this was indeed Yehuda and shot several bullets at him from point blank.”

“What happened is horrible but very expected. Glick was constantly threatened. The fact that he was not assigned protection at all times is a failure. I say this as someone who is the target of constant incitement,” he continued.

“Weakness and incompetence were behind this attack. This was a relaxed conference, the room was half full. This was not an impassioned event. An Arab came there with the urge to kill.”

The incident comes amid increasing tension in Jerusalem over an expected Knesset vote to potentially divide the al-Aqsa mosque compound — the third-holiest site in Islam — between Muslims and Jews, or else restrict Muslim worship at the site.

Although mainstream Jewish leaders consider it forbidden for Jews to enter the area, right-wing nationalist activists have increasingly called for Jewish prayer to be allowed on the site.

Since Israel occupied East Jerusalem in 1967, an agreement with Jordan has maintained that Jewish prayer be allowed at the Western Wall plaza — built on the site of a Palestinian neighborhood of 800 that was destroyed immediately following the conquest — but not inside the al-Aqsa mosque compound itself.

Yehuda Glick is an American-born Israeli and the chairman of the Temple Mount Heritage Fund, an extremist Jewish organization focused on “strengthening the relationship between Israel and the Temple Mount.”

He has been previously banned by Israeli authorities from entering the compound due to provocations while on the site.

Critics charge that the Fund actually leads Jewish tours to the site with the intention of leading Jewish prayer there — currently banned under Israeli agreements — and encouraging Jews to destroy the Al-Aqsa mosque and build a Jewish temple there.

Mirrored from Ma’an News Agency

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Video added by Juan Cole:

Reuters: “Israeli far-right activist shot and wounded in Jerusalem, says media”

6 Responses

  1. Dear Professor Cole

    Netanyahu continues to blame the victims. Nobody has told Chickenshit that he is playing with fire.

    Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas issued a harsh response to the closure of the Al Aqsa Mosque Thursday morning. “Harming the places sacred to Muslims and Christians is a red line,” he said, adding that he would “not permit this line to be crossed.”

    Abbas’ spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh said the Israeli government bears responsibility for the escalation in Jerusalem. “The state of Palestine,” he said, will use all measures available to it in international law to bring Israel to account and to halt the aggression.

    Abu Rudeineh also appealed to the international community to take steps to stop what he called “Israeli aggression,” saying its continuation amounts to a “declaration of war” on the Palestinian people and the Arab and Islamic nation.

    Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas issued a harsh response to the closure of the Al Aqsa Mosque Thursday morning. “Harming the places sacred to Muslims and Christians is a red line,” he said, adding that he would “not permit this line to be crossed.”

    link to haaretz.com

    • Of course, Netanyahu has been warned – over and over again. But Israeli intelligence, opposition parties, pundits. He ignores the warnings. It will be his demise.

  2. With all of the Palestinians history, homes, lives buried by Israeli terrorist before Israel became a state and all of the Palestinian history, lives etc buried since not hard to imagine that the Israeli Knesset would vote to destroy the Al Aqsa mosque and build a temple on top. The list of human rights violations and war crimes that Israel has gotten away with not beyond imagination

    • “……it is not hard to imagine that the Israeli Knesset would vote to destroy the Al Aqsa mosque and build a temple on top……”

      Pastor John Hagee, a Christian Zionist and published author, as well as a personal friend to every Israeli PM since Menachem Begin, has predicted that this scenario will eventually happen -and he further predicts armed conflict and insurrection shall be the inevitable result.

  3. A Cassandra posts a warning and a choice.

    “Jerusalem is burning and you are not taking any significant steps to stop the blaze. You are only adding fuel to the fire.”

    So said opposition leader Isaac Herzog (Labor) to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the opening session of the Knesset this week.

    Netanyahu has two more pyromaniacs at his side adding fuel to the fire: the Israeli Police and Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat.

    Netanyahu continues to approve more Jewish housing starts in east Jerusalem and throughout the West Bank. The Israeli Police is using excessive force in suppressing the rioting in east Jerusalem, and Barkat has announced a campaign of collective punishment.

    The police are firing tear gas and sponge bullets in a seemingly random manner – most of the houses in Isawiya are said to have broken windows. East Jerusalem residents claim the infamous “skunk truck” which spews a vile-smelling liquid has been used not just to disperse rioters but to punish residents.

    They claim police have used clubs to smash car windows. Isawiya’s mukhtar, Darwish Darwish, said, “This makes no sense. They’re just heating things up instead of calming things down.”

    Meanwhile, Mayor Barkat has told municipal department heads to punish east Jerusalem residents for any violations of the municipal code – everything from traffic offenses to unlicensed businesses, house demolitions and animal confiscations.

    link to jpost.com

  4. One observer, Ali Abunimah, has suggested two points about the Yehuda Glick shooting:

    (1)the suspect, Mutaz Hijazi, may have belonged to a “target bank” in which he was chosen to be located by Israeli police on accusations that were dubious or unfounded;

    (2) an “extrajudicial execution” occurred as witness statements exist suggesting that Hijazi was hiding and unarmed when apprehended. There are also statements suggesting that Israeli police attempted to “confirm the kill” on Hijazi by shooting him as he lay helpless.

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