Metal detectors at entrance to Temple Mount
Metal detectors at entrance to Temple MountYonatan Sindel/Flash90

Supreme Court Chief Justice Esther Hayut, Vice President Hanan Meltzer, and Judge Neal Hendel will discuss tomorrow the petition of Otzma Yehudit party leaders Dr. Michael Ben-Ari, Baruch Marzel, Lehava Chairman Bentzi Gopstein, and Attorney Itamar Ben-Gvir in their petition against installing metal detectors (magnetometers) on the Temple Mount only at the gate used by Jews and tourists.

Muslims had refused to enter the site and prayed in the streets outside for more than a week after Israel installed new security measures after a terrorist attack on the compound in which two Druze Border Police officers were murdered.

Following riots and threats, the Political Security Cabinet decided to remove metal detectors from all gates through which Muslims enter the Temple Mount, leaving a metal detector at one gate, the Mugrabi Gate (Hallel Gate) through which Jews and tourists enter the compound.

The petition, submitted by Adv. Itamar Ben-Gvir, claims the decision was a discriminatory decision by the cabinet that was adopted on the basis of racism. Petitioners claim this is the most severe form of discrimination, and that if there was any reason to distinguish between Muslims and Jews ascending the Mount, one would have expected metal detectors to remain at gates serving Muslims.

The petitioners argue this is a constitutional violation that contradicts the statute of limitations, and also contravenes the Prohibition of Discrimination in Entry to Public Places Law.

Senior attorney for the Supreme Court in the State Attorney's Office Attorney Yuval Rotman said in response that "This is a decision of the political echelon, which is being carried out at the core of the Executive's authority, and it stems from security considerations, therefore it is inappropriate for the Supreme Court to intervene."

Otzma Yehudit leaders say in response that "if the case were the opposite, there is no doubt that the Supreme Court would not allow it to happen. We are filled with hope that the Court will preserve Jew's rights and counter discrimination, inequity, and racism."