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PA cabinet slams Israel over Al-Aqsa violence

Sept. 28, 2009 9:17 P.M. (Updated: Sept. 30, 2009 9:29 A.M.)
Ramallah – Ma'an – The Fatah-backed Palestinian Authority in Ramallah has condemned Sunday’s Israeli infringement on the Al-Aqsa Mosque Compound in Jerusalem and hailed Palestinians who rushed to defend the holy site.

In a statement issued on Monday evening, the cabinet of caretaker Prime Minister Salam Fayyad also urged Arab and Muslim countries to mobilize in defense of Al-Aqsa.

The government “congratulated the Palestinian masses when they rushed to defend Al-Aqsa Mosque and foiled the attempt of settlers and extremists to storm the Mosque.”

The Council of Ministers of the government also denounced the Israeli police for entering the courtyard of the mosque and “attacking worshippers,” injuring some of them.

The cabinet said that the incursion was linked to Israeli plans to expand settlements around Jerusalem and confiscate more Palestinian land, consolidating their control over the city and negating Palestinians’ ability to make the city the capital of their state.

The council said that such actions by “Israeli extremists” has led to increased tension, and called for the international community to take action.

In its statement the cabinet also urged the United Nations Human Rights Council to act to implement the recommendations of the report by Justice Richard Goldstone on alleged war crimes during Israel’s war on Gaza last winter.

The statement also thanked donor states for providing an additional 400 million US dollars to cover the deficit in the PA budget over the next four months.
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