Arabs riot on Temple Mount
Arabs riot on Temple MountJamal Awad/Flash 90

The Middle East Quartet on Saturday urged Israel to “exercise restraint” amid the ongoing violent clashes between security forces and Arabs in Jerusalem.

“The Envoys of the Middle East Quartet from the European Union, Russia, the United States, and the United Nations are closely monitoring the situation in East Jerusalem, including in the Old City and Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood,” said a statement published by the Quartet.

“The Envoys express deep concern over the daily clashes and violence in East Jerusalem, in particular last night’s confrontations between Palestinians and Israeli security forces at Haram Al-Sharif/Temple Mount.”

“We are alarmed by the provocative statements made by some political groups, as well as the launching of rockets and the resumption of incendiary balloons from Gaza towards Israel, and attacks on Palestinian farmland in the West Bank,” the statement said.

The Envoys said they “noted with serious concern the possible evictions of Palestinian families from homes they have lived in for generations in Sheikh Jarrah and Silwan neighborhoods in East Jerusalem and voice opposition to unilateral actions, which will only escalate the already tense environment.”

“We call upon Israeli authorities to exercise restraint and to avoid measures that would further escalate the situation during this period of Muslim Holy Days. We call on all sides to uphold and respect the status quo at the holy sites. All leaders have a responsibility to act against extremists and to speak out against all acts of violence and incitement. In this context, the Quartet Envoys reiterated their commitment to a negotiated two state solution,” concluded the statement.

The Quartet, which seeks to broker peace between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, had been on the sidelines in recent years, allowing the US to spearhead efforts to broker an Israel-PA deal.

The four members of the Middle East Quartet recently called for the resumption of "meaningful negotiations" to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian Arab conflict.