Palestine’s Hamas resistance movement has called on all Palestinians to mobilize to confront Israel’s malicious conspiracies against the al-Aqsa Mosque in the occupied al-Quds and protect it against the regime’s acts of sacrilege.
“Al-Quds [Palestinian] residents are the spearhead of the battle against the occupying Zionists and the nation’s hope for defending the first Qibla of the Muslims,” Mohammad Hamadeh, spokesman for the Hamas branch in occupied al-Quds, said on Wednesday.
The remarks followed yet another military-backed desecration of the al-Aqsa Mosque by Israeli settlers.
Palestinian media said over 230 settlers entered the mosque in groups via the al-Maghariba Gate and toured the courtyards. Israeli rabbis also delivered lectures and a number of visitors performed prayers at the site.
Radical Israeli groups are encouraging the settlers to visit the flashpoint holy site throughout the upcoming Jewish holidays later this month.
As per a long-standing agreement signed between Israel and the Jordanian government in the wake of Israel’s occupation of East al-Quds in 1967, Jews may visit the al-Aqsa Mosque compound but are not allowed to pray there.
However, an uptick in visits by Israeli settlers to the mosque has angered Palestinian Muslims and led to protests, which are usually met with Israeli forces’ brutal attacks on the protesters.
The Palestinians have repeatedly voiced concerns over the Israeli regime’s plot to change the status quo of the third holiest site in Islam, including by dividing the site into Jewish and Muslim sectors or setting times for visits.
In May last year, frequent acts of violence against Palestinian worshipers at al-Aqsa Mosque promoted Gaza-based resistance groups to declare war against Israel in defense of their compatriots in the Israeli-occupied territories.