Temple Mount
Temple MountMati Amar/TPS

The Fatah movement is calling on the Palestinian Arab public to arrive at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, to gather outside and hold a prayer until its entrances are opened by Israel.

The call follows riots and clashes on the Temple Mount in recent days, as Muslims have forcibly tried enter the closed Gate of Mercy compound.

The closure of the gates by Israel was described by the Fatah movement as “a crime and provocation of the feelings of all Muslims.”

The Gate of Mercy, known as Bab al-Rahma in Arabic, was closed by Israeli authorities several years ago because the group running the area was found to have ties to Hamas. It has been kept closed to stop illegal construction work by the Waqf.

Osama al-Qawasmeh, a member of Fatah's Revolutionary Council and its spokesman, said that Israel is “playing with fire” and igniting the entire region in order to turn the conflict from its political nature into a religious conflict that will destroy everything.

Qawasmeh blamed Israel for the consequences of the situation and called on the Arab and Muslim world to intervene immediately to prevent a "massacre in Al-Aqsa."

The Temple Mount was left in the hands of the Jordanian Waqf following Jerusalem’s reunification in the Six Day War in 1967. The Waqf has taken advantage of this and removed every sign of ancient Jewish presence at the most Jewish holy site.

Police, in an attempt to appease the Waqf, discriminate against Jews. They limit the number of Jewish worshippers allowed on the Temple Mount at one time in order to prevent conflict with Muslim worshippers. They often close the Mount to Jews in response to Muslim riots – despite evidence that Muslim riots have been planned in advance for the specific purpose of forcing Jews out.

Despite this, Palestinian Arabs regularly blame Israel for the Arab riots and violence on the Temple Mount and, in general, falsely claim that Israel is “Judaizing” Jerusalem, which they claim is their capital, in an attempt to erase the Muslim connection to the city.