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Israeli rightists tour Aqsa compound under guard

Oct. 24, 2013 2:21 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 25, 2013 9:48 A.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli rightists toured the Al-Aqsa compound on Thursday escorted by Israeli police, witnesses said.

An Israeli rightist, who had recently been banned from entering the mosque compound, tried to enter the area to pray, but was stopped by Israeli forces.

Israeli police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld said "normal visits took place regularly and there were no incidents."

The compound, which sits just above the Western Wall plaza, houses both the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa mosque and is 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. The Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD.

According to mainstream Jewish religious leaders, Jews are forbidden from entering for fear they would profane the "Holy of Holies," or the inner sanctum of the Second Temple.

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