Jews pray at the Western Wall
Jews pray at the Western Wall Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

Sheikh Ikrima Sabri, head of the Supreme Islamic Council in Jerusalem, issued a fatwa (ruling on a point of Islamic law) stating that the Western Wall (which the Muslims refer to as the Al-Buraq Wall) is an inseparable part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and is considered an Islamic sanctuary.

In the fatwa, Sabri writes that the Western Wall is part of the structure, in this case the Al-Aqsa Mosque. He claims that the Muslim prophet Muhammad had tied his wonderful horse Buraq to this wall before embarking on his heavenly journey.

Sabri further claims that the Western Wall belongs exclusively to Muslims all over the world, and that Muslims would never recognize the Jews' ownership of the site. He also states that there is not a single rock at the Western Wall which is connected to Jewish history.

Sabri also says that, as a foreign government, Israel is forbidden from carrying out any renovation work on the walls of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and that the Western Wall should not be called by its Hebrew name.

In the past, Sabri has rejected the demand for Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount, saying it is "unacceptable".

In 2014, he declared that Al-Aqsa was a “red line” for Arabs, adding, “We will not give up even one grain of earth (at the Al-Aqsa Mosque), since the Jews have no connection to it whatsoever.”

Last year Sabri accused "extremist" Jewish organizations of waging a legal battle aimed at achieving Israeli sovereignty in the Al-Aqsa Mosque.