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Israeli settlers perform religious rituals at Al-Aqsa

Oct. 7, 2018 1:52 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 8, 2018 11:13 A.M.)
(File)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Large numbers of Israeli settlers escorted by Israeli forces stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, in the Old City of occupied East Jerusalem, on Sunday.

According to local sources, more than 100 Israeli settlers stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound as they were accompanied by heavily armed Israeli forces.

Sources said that the Israeli settlers performed religious Jewish rituals and prayers at the compound.

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.

While Jewish visitation is permitted to the compound, non-Muslim worship is prohibited according to an agreement signed between Israel and the Jordanian government after Israel's illegal occupation of East Jerusalem in 1967.

Despite the agreement with Jordan -- which is the custodian of Al-Aqsa -- Israeli authorities regularly allow Jewish visitors to enter the site, often under armed guard. Such visits are typically made by right-wingers attempting to unsettle the status quo at the site, and coincide with restrictions on Palestinian access, including bans on entrance and detentions.

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