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Israeli forces escort Israelis onto Al-Aqsa compound

Oct. 24, 2017 1:13 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 25, 2017 12:38 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- A group of ultra right-wing Israelis entered the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem on Tuesday morning under the escort of armed Israeli forces.

The Voice of Palestine Radio reported that 25 Israelis entered and toured the compound.

An Israeli police spokesperson told Ma’an that they were aware of the incident.

Following Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem in 1967, and subsequent annexation, Israel has maintained a compromise with the Islamic trust not to not allow non-Muslim prayers in the area. However, non-Muslims are permitted to enter and visit the holy compound during designated hours.

Israeli forces nonetheless regularly escort Jewish visitors to the site, who often times carry out prayers in an attempt to challenge the status quo at Al-Aqsa, leading to tensions with Palestinian worshipers.

The Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, which sits just above the Western Wall plaza, houses both the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa mosque. The third holiest site in Islam, it is also venerated as Judaism's most holy place, as it sits where Jews believe the First and Second Temples once stood.

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