PA condemns closure of Cave of Patriarchs on Yom Kippur

PA official says Israeli decision to close the Cave of the Patriarchs on Yom Kippur is "a blatant attack on Muslims".

Dalit Halevi ,

Cave of the Patriarchs
Cave of the Patriarchs
Photo: TPS

The Palestinian Authority’s “ministry of endowments and religious affairs” condemned the decision of the "Israeli occupation authorities" to close the Ibrahimi Mosque (Cave of the Patriarchs) during Yom Kippur, which will begin at sundown on Tuesday.

Husam Abu al-Rob, director general of the “ministry of endowments”, called for the Ibrahimi Mosque to be “rescued” and for an end to all the damage that is inflicted on it on a daily basis.

He described the closure of the site and its "desecration" by the “settlers” as "a blatant attack on Muslims and every Islamic site."

Al-Rob claimed that Israeli policy seeks to take full control of the entire area, and this is also reflected in preventing the call for prayer in 52 incidents in the past month.

The PA claims that the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hevron belongs only to Muslims and its officials have often accused Israel of trying to desecrate the Cave of the Patriarchs, in one incident taking issue with Israel placing a flag and a lamp in the area.

The PA received backing for its claim of ownership of the site when the World Heritage Committee of the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization declared that site and the surrounding Old City of Hevron to be “Palestinian heritage sites.”