Rabbi Yisrael Ariel of the Temple Institute and activist Yehuda Glick were arrested Thursday morning on the Temple Mount.
An eyewitness told Arutz Sheva that the two were violently arrested at the exit to the holy site. Police dragged the men on the ground, he accused.
Police said the two were arrested for praying and bowing down while visiting the Temple Mount, which is the holiest place on earth according to Judaism, and the site where the First and Second Temples once stood.
While Jews are allowed to visit the site, they are forbidden to pray, for fear that Jewish prayers would inflame tension at the site. Muslim worshipers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque have frequently rioted and attacked Jews in the past when it seemed that Jews would be allowed more freedom on the Temple Mount; the riots have been encouraged by PA and Muslim leaders, who tell their followers that Jews are plotting to take over the area and rebuild the Temple.
Yehuda Glick told Arutz Sheva that the allegations that he prayed are not even true. “I was guiding a group on the Temple Mount. Everything went well, we finished the tour and shook hands with the police, and from there I went to the Kotel [Western Wall],” he recalled.
“A few moments later, I got a call asking me to come back and guide another group. I came back to the entrance to the Temple Mount, and there I was arrested. A police commander told me I was being arrested for disturbing the peace on the Temple Mount,” he said.
Glick expressed concern, “This is the first time they detained me, and I don’t know what they want from me… I have a strong feeling that I’m being set up.”