Mordechai: Gaza residents barred from Al-Aqsa Mosque

PNN/Bethlehem/

Israeli Coordinator of Government Activities Yoav Mordechai announced this morning that Gaza residents would not be allowed to enter Israel to pray at Al-Aqsa Mosque, reported Hebrew news website Walla today.

Mordechai stated today that ‘in light of rocket fire from Gaza into Israel yesterday, the Israeli government has decided to revoke the permits of Gaza citizens wishing to enter Al-Aqsa Mosque on Friday’.

According to Walla, Mordechai said that the decision of the Israeli government came in the context of rockets fired from Gaza, indicating that the situation at Beit Hanoun ‘Erez’ crossing had become insecure, and therefore Israel had revoked its decision to allow Gaza residents to pass through the checkpoint at the end of this week.

International expert on law, Dr. Hana Aisa, condemned this decision, saying that it was an example of racial profiling.

Last week, more than 400 citizens of the Gaza Strip managed to gain permits to attend the first Friday prayer of the holy month of Ramadan, crossing through the Beit Hanoun ‘Erez’ checkpoint in northern Gaza.

Security has been tight at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound during the first week of Ramadan, and tensions have risen after a Palestinian youth was shot after he stabbed an Israeli policeman. Extremist settlers have also added fuel to the fire with multiple break ins at the site under the protection of Israeli special service units.