Israel's outgoing ambassador to the United Nations Ron Prosor .
(photo credit: REUTERS)
NEW YORK - Ambassador to the UN Ron Prosor reacted on Friday to the Security Council’s statement concerning the escalating tensions in Jerusalem, saying “When the Palestinians set the Temple Mount ablaze, Mahmoud Abbas fuels the fire, and the Security Council fans the flames, it is a recipe for a regional explosion.”
The United Nations Security Council on Thursday had called for “restraint, refraining from provocative actions and rhetoric and upholding the historic status quo” on the Temple Mount.
The official statement had been expected since Tuesday, when Security Council president Vitaly Churkin publicly announced that the council would release one.
The Security Council expressed its “grave concern” and urged all sides to “work cooperatively together to lower tensions and discourage violence at holy sites in Jerusalem.”
“Muslim worshipers at the Haram al-Sharif must be allowed to worship in peace, free from violence, threats and provocation,” the statement said.
Member states of the Security Council also wrote that visitors should be without fear of violence or intimidation.
Prosor responded, “This statement, which only uses the Arabic name for the Temple Mount, affirms the right of Muslims to be present and to pray at the compound, but completely ignores the Palestinian violence, the deep connection of the Jewish people to the Temple Mount, and the right of all to visit the site.”
Prosor also pointed his finger at Mahmoud Abbas saying that the Palestinian leader had chosen to “fuel the fire in the most shameful manner.”
According to him, “The chairman of the Palestinian Authority encourages and legitimizes extremist Islamic activities with his anti-Semitic remarks.”
Earlier on Thursday, Prosor sent a letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon reiterating Israel’s commitment to maintain the status quo on the Temple Mount, as well as “safeguard the holy sites of the three monotheistic faiths in Jerusalem.”
The ambassador added that “any attempt by the UN to equivocate or avoid a clear statement denouncing those responsible for the outbreak of violence will only encourage further destabilizing activities, and further inflame an already dangerous situation.”
Arab violence has been escalating in the capital since last Sunday. The violence cost the life of one Israeli civilian, Alexander Levlovitz, 64, who died when youths stoned his car and he crashed into a utility pole, and wounded dozens. Security forces were placed on high alert on Friday morning, ahead of protests in Jerusalem and the West Bank, which took place after Muslim afternoon prayers.