Temple Mount
Temple Mount Mati Amar/TPS

Jordan is giving full backing to the activities of the Waqf in Bab al-Rahma, also known as the Gate of Mercy or Golden Gate, on the Temple Mount, Kan 11 News reported on Wednesday.

According to the report, the Jordanian embassy is claiming that the compound is an inseparable part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and that the Waqf has exclusive authority over it. The Waqf does not recognize the decisions of the Israeli police and courts, which have ordered the closure of the compound.

The Jordanian government has also made clear that it was working to restore calm to the area and was in talks with Israel on the issue.

Earlier this week, political sources said that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu had decided to enforce the court order to close the compound without compromise, and that a message to this effect was also sent to Jordan.

Bab al-Rahma was closed by Israeli authorities several years ago because the group running the area was found to have ties to Hamas. It has been kept closed to stop illegal construction work by the Waqf.

Over the last several weeks, riots and clashes occurred on the Temple Mount as Muslims forcibly tried enter the closed compound.

Last Friday, rioters forced their way into the Golden Gate, after police officers were instructed to contain the rioters, but not to remove them from the area.

Sources said this week that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu had decided to enforce the court order to close the compound without compromise, and that the message was also sent to Jordan.

The Fatah movement, which is headed by Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas, has described the closure of the gate by Israel as “a crime and provocation of the feelings of all Muslims.”

The Temple Mount was left in the hands of the Jordanian Waqf following Jerusalem’s reunification in the Six Day War in 1967. The Waqf has taken advantage of this and removed every sign of ancient Jewish presence at the most Jewish holy site.

Police, in an attempt to appease the Waqf, discriminate against Jews. They limit the number of Jewish worshippers allowed on the Temple Mount at one time in order to prevent conflict with Muslim worshippers. They often close the Mount to Jews in response to Muslim riots – despite evidence that Muslim riots have been planned in advance for the specific purpose of forcing Jews out.

Despite this, Palestinian Arabs regularly blame Israel for the Arab riots and violence on the Temple Mount and, in general, falsely claim that Israel is trying to "Judaize" the compound.

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