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(photo credit: Courtesy)
A group of Israeli archeologists and public officials who petitioned the High Court of Justice against Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and the Antiquities Authority over ongoing Wakf infrastructure work on the Temple Mount were ordered out of the courtroom during a hearing Thursday, an archeologist said.
The members of the nonpartisan Committee Against the Destruction of Antiquities on the Temple Mount had to leave the courtroom while the state-run archeological body presented "secret" evidence to the court.
"It is more than clear that Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has instructed the Antiquities Authority to cooperate with the Wakf and conceal the damage to antiquities being done during the infrastructure work at the site," said Hebrew University archeologist and leading Temple Mount expert Dr. Eilat Mazar.
The two-month old dig on the Temple Mount is being carried out by Islamic officials with Israeli approval as part of infrastructure work to repair faulty electrical lines on the ancient compound.
The independent Israeli archeologists say that the dig, which is being carried out with tractors and other heavy construction machinery, has created a 400-meter long and 1.5 meter deep trench, destroying several layers of ancient remains on the Temple Mount