'We didn't agree to Palestinian accompaniment on Temple Mount'

Chilean embassy in Israel clarifies President's visit to Temple Mount in which PA officials were present.

Nitsan Keidar ,

Chilean President Sebastian Pinera at the Western Wall
Chilean President Sebastian Pinera at the Western Wall
Western Wall Heritage Foundation

The Foreign Ministry on Wednesday received an official letter from the Chilean embassy in Israel containing a clarification on the issue of the visit of the Chilean President and his entourage to the Temple Mount.

The letter clarified that the Chilean delegation had not agreed to any formal accompaniment of any party on the visit, which was defined as private, nor was it aware of the presence of Palestinian Arab officials.

Earlier, Chilean President Sebastien Pinera apologized to President Reuven Rivlin for having visited the Temple Mount together with senior officials from the Palestinian Authority, in contrast to an earlier agreement with Israel.

Pinera explained to Rivlin that the visit to the Temple Mount was supposed to be private and senior Palestinian Authority officials were not invited but appeared there anyway.

Among those who accompanied the Chilean President to the Temple Mount were the Palestinian Authority official in charge of Jerusalem Affairs, Fadi al-Hadami.

On Wednesday morning, Israel protested to Chile over the PA officials’ presence during Pinera’s Temple Mount tour.

Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz said Chilean Ambassador Rodrigo Fernandez was rebuked for Pinera's visit taking place "in violation of the regulations and a prior agreement."