Temple Mount: Soldier Arrested for Bowing His Head

Legal rights group slams 'disgraceful' arrest of Jewish soldier at Judaism's holiest site; capitulation to Islamists 'a badge of shame.'

Ari Soffer,

Soldier being led away by police after 'bowing' on Temple Mount
Soldier being led away by police after 'bowing' on Temple Mount
Honenu

An Israeli soldier has been arrested by police for allegedly "bowing his head" upon leaving the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, Judaism's holiest site.

According to a statement by the legal rights group Honenu, police claimed that as he was exiting the soldier turned and nodded his head in the direction of the holy site in the traditional Jewish mark of respect upon exiting a holy place.

Honenu condemned the arrest in a statement, saying "The arrest of an IDF soldier for daring to act with respect in a holy place is a disgrace."

"The fact that such an arrest occurred the day before the Independence Day of the State of Israel is a badge of shame for the country and its sovereignty in its capital city Jerusalem," the group added.

It said Honenu lawyer Rehavia Piletz is currently working to free the soldier.

Despite its status as the holiest site in Judaism, Jews - as well as other non-Muslims - are forbidden from praying or performing any other acts of worship on the Temple Mount, in what Jewish activists have slammed as a capitulation to threats by Islamist groups.

Religious Jews in particular are closely monitored by police and members of the Waqf Islamic trust which administers the site, also home to the Al Aqsa Mosque complex. Jews suspected of uttering silent prayers or bowing are regularly arrested, despite numerous court orders demanding police secure the right to freedom of worship for Jews as well as Muslims.

Even religious Jews simply visiting the Temple Mount are often singled out for harassment and occasionally even assaulted by Muslim extremists at the holy site.




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