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Activists Crash Jordanian Border in Temple Mount Protest

A group of nationalists tried to cross Israel's border with Jordan to protest Jordan's demand that the Mughrabi bridge not be replaced.
By Gabe Kahn.
First Publish: 12/12/2011, 7:47 PM

Border Fence (Archive)
Border Fence (Archive)
Flash 90

Dozens of right-wing activists led by Meir Bartler jumped the fence near Qasr Al Yehud on Monday to protest Jordan's interference on the Temple Mount.

A large border patrol force was deployed to turn the activists away and prevent them from breaching the international boundary with Jordan.

Qasr Al Yehud is located south of the Allenby border crossing, east of Jericho. It is blocked off by a perimeter fence and restricted from civilian access due to its proximity to the border.

The activists subsequently barricaded themselves in a structure at Qasr Al Yehud that they renamed "Metzudat Ze'ev [Ze'ev Jabotinsky fortress]," after Likud party headquarters in Tel Aviv.

Bartler told Arutz Sheva "Jordan and its intervention is illegitimate, and yet they interfere in matters pertaining to the Temple Mount. We crossed the border in order to remind every Likudnik of Jabotinsky's words: 'There are two banks to the Jordan - and both are ours.'"

"The Likud must return to its Zionist roots," he explained.

The activists are protesting Jordan's warning that replacing the Mughrabi Bridge would result in a religious war in Jerusalem's Old City. 

Israel's courts have ruled the structure, which was deemed unsafe, could be replaced by Israeli authorities – but there are concerns officials in Jerusalem will cave to Jordanian and Egyptian pressure and not replace the structure.

The closing of the bridge earlier Monday in the absence of a replacement effectively ends Jewish access to the Temple Mount.

David Ha'Ivri, a long-time activist for Jewish rights on the Temple Mount, lauded Bartler's actions. "The little king in Amman should learn to mind his own business," Ha'Ivri said. "Abdullah has become ungrateful to Israel and should know his place."

"The Temple Mount is the most important landmark for the people and State of Israel. We do not need his opinion on how to manage it," he added.