Turkish team to arrive for Mughrabi gate inspection

The team, an archeologist, an architect, 2 historians and 3 engineers, is to meet with members of the IAA on Wednesday and the Wakf on Thursday.

mughrabi dig 298.88 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
mughrabi dig 298.88
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
A seven-person Turkish technical team is scheduled to arrive on Tuesday to look at the excavations at the Mughrabi Gate outside the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, more than a month after Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan suggested the idea to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert during Olmert's visit to Ankara. The team, made up of an archeologist, architect, two historians and three engineers, is slated to meet with representatives of the Israeli Antiquities Authority on Wednesday and the Wakf on Thursday. According to Turkish officials, the team will then return to Turkey and write a report to be presented to Erdogan. This team comes fast on the heels of a technical team sent by UNESCO, which presented its report last week. That report found that there was no evidence of any damage to the site by the recent excavations, but said Israel should consult with all "concerned parties," including the Wakf and Jordan, and come up with an agreed upon "plan of action." The report also said the project to build the new ramp at the site "should be supervised by an international team of experts coordinated by UNESCO and involving in particular structural engineers." Turkish officials said Turkey wanted to wait to send its team until after the UNESCO report was delivered.