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Israeli MK tours Jerusalem's Old City, as settlers storm Al-Aqsa

Jan. 27, 2019 2:37 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 30, 2019 10:18 A.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Miri Regev, the Israeli Minister of Culture and Sport of Israel, toured the streets of the Old City of Jerusalem, as dozens of Israeli settlers stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound on Sunday.

A Ma'an reporter said that Regev toured the streets of the Old City along with a camera crew, in order to shoot her political campaign, for the upcoming Israeli legislative elections in April.

Meanwhile, about 39 Israeli settlers stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound through the Moroccans Gate in the form of successive groups and toured throughout the compound.

Israeli forces, who were deployed across the compound, banned the entry of clothes of Al-Aqsa guards.

Sheikh Omar al-Kiswani, director of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, pointed out that Israeli forces also banned employees from the Islamic Endowment Department from entry into compound, preventing them from carrying out their work duties.

Al-Kiswani added that such provocations by Israeli forces occur on a daily basis.

Eyewitnesses told Ma'an that Israeli forces detained a Palestinian youth in the streets in Jerusalem’s Old City, in addition the youth was repeatedly assaulted by the soldiers.

The reason for the youth’s detention remained unknown.

The Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, which sits just above the Western Wall plaza, houses both the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa mosque. The third holiest site in Islam, it is also venerated as Judaism's most holy place, as it sits where Jews believe the First and Second Temples once stood.

While Jewish visitation is permitted to the compound, non-Muslim worship is prohibited according to an agreement signed between Israel and the Jordanian government after Israel’s illegal occupation of East Jerusalem in 1967.

Despite the agreement with Jordan -- which is the custodian of Al-Aqsa -- Israeli authorities regularly allow Jewish visitors to enter the site, often under armed guard. Such visits are typically made by right-wingers attempting to unsettle the status quo at the site, and coincide with restrictions on Palestinian access, including bans on entrance and detentions.

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