AMMAN: Jordan summoned Israel’s ambassador on Sunday in protest over “violations” at Jerusalem’s flashpoint Al Aqsa Mosque compound, the foreign ministry said.
It summoned envoy Amir Weissbrod to voice its “condemnation and rejection of Israeli violations” at the highly sensitive site, where Israeli security forces clashed with Palestinian worshippers last week.
Jordan, the only Arab country apart from Egypt to have a peace agreement with the Jewish state, supervises some holy sites in Jerusalem.
Its diplomatic protest came days after Israeli Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan reportedly told a radio station that the country should work toward Jews being allowed to pray at the holy site.
But he added the change should come through “political agreements and not by force,” according to Israeli newspaper Haaretz.
Jews are allowed to visit but cannot pray there — a ban condemned by some nationalists including members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing coalition.
Jordan’s foreign ministry expressed “the kingdom’s strong condemnation” over Erdan’s comments, demanding “an immediate stop to Israel’s violations and all its attempts to change the historic and legal status quo” at the site.Israeli police and Palestinian worshippers clashed at the compound on August 11 as Muslims around the world marked the Eidul Azha holiday.
That festival coincided with the Jewish Tisha B’av holiday, resulting in an increase in visits by Jewish religious nationalists to the holy site.
Published in Dawn, August 19th, 2019