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Diplomacy & Politics
MELANIE LIDMAN \
Police block Feiglin from accessing Temple Mount
Likud activist Moshe Feiglin at the Kotel 390.
(photo credit:Marc Israel Sellem)
Police prevented former Likud leadership contender Moshe Feiglin from entering
the Temple Mount Sunday morning, after accusing him and right-wing activists of
attempting to disrupt order.A flyer aimed at members of the Likud
Central Committee urged thousands of supporters to join Feiglin at the Temple
Mount on Sunday morning.“Purify the site from the enemies of Israel who
stole the land, and build the Third Temple on the ruins of the mosques,” the
flyer read.Jerusalem Police Chief Nisso Shaham closed the Temple Mount
to all non-Muslim visitors Sunday morning as a result of the
announcement.Feiglin and three other Likud activists attempted to enter
the site around 8 a.m. on Sunday morning, and tried to argue with the guards
that their plan to go up to the Temple Mount was for purely personal reasons.
They went to pray at the Western Wall after police prevented them from entering
the Temple Mount.Feiglin said the announcement was fake and created
without his permission.It was posted on the website of Har Habayit
Shelanu, an activist group dedicated to Jewish sovereignty at the Temple
Mount.“Instead of closing the Temple Mount, the police need to
investigate who made this announcement,” said Amnon Shomron, the media adviser
to Feiglin. “The bottom line is that police need to arrest people who incite,
and this was incitement.”Shomron added that the flyer included mistakes
in Feiglin’s job title in the Likud party and other inaccuracies. Feiglin has a
tradition of going up to the Temple Mount on every 19th of the Hebrew month,
along with five-to-ten supporters, but had no plans to bring thousands of people
with him, said Shomron.Police took the accusations of incitement
seriously and closed the site to all non-Muslim worshippers.Police will
examine the security situation later on Sunday to determine if the site will
reopen Monday.“The areas of the Temple Mount and the Kotel Plaza are
used as a place of prayer and religious rituals and the police will not allow
any political use or incitement from any representative of any religion, and
will utilize every ability of the law to stop this,” said Jerusalem Police
Spokesman Shmuel Ben Ruby.In response to the flyer, a few hundred Muslim
worshippers gathered near the Al Aqsa Mosque and demonstrated against Feiglin’s
attempt to go up to the Temple Mount, according to Ben Ruby. They yelled “Allu
Akbar” loud enough that it was audible from the Western Wall plaza below, but
there was no violence.Last night, Left-wing groups Keshev and Ir Amim
sent a letter to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu demanding he “immediately
stop this craziness” and bar Feiglin from visiting the Temple Mount.“The
participation of Likud members in this dangerous provocation falls on you and
the results are your full responsibility,” the organizations wrote in the
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