Arabs riot minutes before housing minister ascends Temple Mount

Uri Ariel, denied entry to Jerusalem holy site after Arab teens throw rocks, says rioters control access to Temple Mount.

By
March 16, 2014 14:25
2 minute read.
Temple Mount

The Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount.. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

At least seven Palestinians were arrested Sunday morning on the Temple Mount for rioting against Construction and Housing Minister Uri Ariel’s scheduled tour of the contested holy site, police said.

Upon learning of Ariel’s visit, teens wearing face masks threw stones and firecrackers at visitors and police at approximately 7:30 a.m.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


“As soon as visitors entered they attacked them and police, who were forced to utilize non-lethal riot control,” a police spokesman said after the rioting. “No officers were injured during the riot and the Temple Mount remained open with limited access, to protect visitors.”

Undeterred by the violence, Ariel participated in a highly restrictive and brief tour, accompanied by a police detail.

Following his tour the minister said he would continue to visit the holy site and called for Jewish sovereignty over it.

“The reality in which rioters control the agenda on the Temple Mount and prevent Jews from accessing the area is not acceptable,” he said. “I went up the Mount this morning and I intend to continue to do so in the future, and I call on the security forces to help maintain Jewish sovereignty and allow any Jew to access the Temple Mount.”

Following the riot, Jerusalem city councilor and east Jerusalem portfolio holder Meir Margalit condemned Ariel’s visit as a “clear provocation,” and attempt to sabotage foundering peace negotiations.



“I’m not surprised that someone like Uri Ariel would make this kind of provocation because he is doing everything he can to undermine peace negotiations,” said Margalit on Sunday.

“We know that all these right-wing groups will try to create a chaotic situation as we get closer to April when [US Secretary of State] John Kerry will present his plan.”

Moreover, Margalit accused the Right and police of colluding to derail the peace talks.

“I am very worried about this attitude because I know this is not a partisan initiative,” he said. “The government and police are behind this and support this action, which could result in a big explosion [at] the Temple Mount.”

Margalit continued, “The risk that negotiations will collapse is very high.”

Last month, riots broke out on the Temple mount after Friday prayers, when hundreds of Palestinians attacked officers with rocks. The violence came one day after police closed the holy site to Jews to avert another riot, following numerous anonymous threats from Arabs of imminent violence should any Jews ascend.

The incident was followed by a plenum discussion of Israeli sovereignty over the holy site, during which MK Moshe Feiglin (Likud Beytenu) contended that “the State of Israel is pointless without the Temple Mount.”

Related Content

Riot
August 31, 2014
Rioting resumes throughout east Jerusalem Saturday night

By DANIEL K. EISENBUD