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      Illegal Mosque Next to Begin’s Grave

      Jerusalem municipality in no rush to halt construction, says activist, who plans a surprise at Presidents’ Conference.
      By Gil Ronen
      First Publish: 6/19/2011, 8:42 PM / Last Update: 6/19/2011, 8:47 PM

      Aryeh King

      A mosque is being illegally constructed in close proximity to the graves of deceased prime minister Menachem Begin and Eliezer Ben Yehuda, the reviver of spoken Hebrew. Activist Aryeh King has repeatedly asked the Jerusalem Municipality to stop the construction next to the Mount of Olives Cemetery but he says the Municipality is in no hurry to do so.

       
      Arabs began enlarging a small existing mosque last October, King told Arutz Sheva’s Hebrew-language service. In one week’s time, the size of the mosque’s floor had doubled. Complaints were filed with the municipality but the municipality dawdled and the builders added walls. In December the Municipality issued a stop work order, but the Arabs kept on building.
       
      King says work continues on the site, including excavation eight meters deep for an unknown purpose. The Municipality is dragging its feet, says King, now saying that stopping the building of a mosque is “sensitive” and requires legal consultation.  
       
      Undeterred, King divulges that he has a surprise in store for the municipality. One of the speakers at the Presidents’ Conference in Jerusalem Monday will raise the subject and show photographs of the site, he reveals. “Things that do not bother the leaders in Israel, bother the leaders of the Jewish people abroad very much,” according to King, who in March accused Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu of dividing Jerusalem.
       
      The Jerusalem Municpality has a less-than-stellar record regarding toughness on illegal Arab construction.
       
      Photos by Aryeh King: