Ben-Gvir on Temple Mount
Ben-Gvir on Temple Mountspokesperson

An official in the Prime Minister's Office rejected claims that the visit of National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir to the Temple Mount Tuesday morning constitutes a change in the status quot at tge site, the holiest in Judaism.

"Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is committed to strictly maintaining the status quo, without changes, on the Temple Mount. We will not be dictated to by Hamas. Under the status quo, ministers have gone up to the Temple Mount in recent years, including Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan; therefore, the claim that a change has been made in the status quo is without foundation," the official said.

National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir ascended the Temple Mount this morning (Tuesday) to mark the fast of the Tenth of Tevet. This is his first visit since the elections and it was coordinated with the Israeli Police.

Ben-Gvir arrived at the Temple Mount under heavy security that included his personal bodyguards and other police officers.

Israeli security officials had warned the prime minister that Ben-Gvir's visit could lead to a major escalation with terrorist forces in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza.

On Sunday, the Hamas terror organization threatened Israel in response to Ben-Gvir's planned visit.

"The extremist Ben-Gvir is trying to convince his voters that he is implementing his promises by breaking into Al-Aqsa (Mosque)," said Harun Nasser El-Din, the Hamas official responsible for the issue of Jerusalem.

"We hold the government of the occupation responsible for any escalation if there is damage to Al-Aqsa (Mosque) or to our people who are clinging to Jerusalem," the Hamas official added.

"We call on our people to protect Al-Aqsa (Mosque), and we are sure that our people will thwart all attempts to impose a new reality on Al-Aqsa (Mosque)."