(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Temple Mount activist Yehuda Glick is slated to become the next MK for the Likud party after Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon announced his resignation from the ministry and the Knesset Friday morning.
Glick is a controversial figure in both the religious and political sphere in Israel, becoming the face of the Jewish struggle for prayer rights at the Temple Mount, the most sacred holy site in Judaism and third holiest in Islam.
His activism almost lead to his death in late 2014, when he sustained four gunshot wounds outside the Menchem Begin Hermitage Center in Jerusalem from the gun of convicted Palestinian terrorist Moataz Hejazi.
Hejazi was killed in a shootout with police in the Abu Tor neighborhood shortly after the event. Hejazi, 32, was a member of Islamic Jihad who served 11-and-a-half years in prison for nationalistic crimes.
The flashpoint religious site has been at the center of escalating tensions between Arabs and Jews over the past several months. Beggining last September
, a series of confrontations between Israel Security Forces and Palestinian youths over Jewish prayer at the holy site led to accusations that Israel was upending the status quo
and "provoking" unrest.
What followed was a months-long wave of violence in the form of stabbing attacks, deadly car-rammings and shootings among others.
Zionist Union MK Yael Cohen-Peran said she would boycott the swearing-in of Glick, saying that an ethical man is being replaced by a dangerous extremist. Judy Siegel contributed to this article.