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(photo credit: Associated Press)
A criminal investigation was launched Thursday against Islamic Movement Northern Front leader Sheikh Raed Salah by the head of the Special Tasks Division in the State Attorney's Office, attorney Shai Nitzan, following a fiery sermon delivered last week at a protest against the work at the Mughrabi Gate.
Salah will be investigated for alleged incitement to violence as well as incitement to racism and rebellion for comments he made on February 9 and February 16, in which he called for a third Palestinian intifada against Israel in response to construction work at the gate.
Both State Prosecutor Eran Shendar and Attorney-General Menahem Mazuz backed the investigation.
Salah spoke again on Thursday at a protest rally organized by his organization in east Jerusalem's Wadi Joz, which was attended by hundreds of Muslim demonstrators angry over the controversial construction outside the Temple Mount.
In his speech last week, Salah called on Muslims to "save al-Aksa Mosque, free Jerusalem and end the occupation." He also attacked Jews, saying, "They want to build their temple at a time when our blood is on their clothes, on their doorsteps, in their food and in their drinks. Our blood has passed from one 'general terrorist' to another 'general terrorist."
He also quoted assassinated Hamas leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, saying: "'The powerful won't remain powerful forever and the weak won't remain weak.'"
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