Sheik Ra'ad Salah
Photo: Haim Zach
Sheik: Israel murders those who oppose its policy
Controversial Sheik Ra'ad Salah, who stands to be indicted on incitement charges, delivers sermon in E. Jerusalem marking '40-year occupation of al-Aqsa Mosque' and alleging that shooting carried out by Arab Israeli terrorist last week was fabricated
Those who oppose Israel's policy on Jerusalem are "in danger of being murdered in cold blood," asserted Sheikh Ra'ad Salah on Saturday at a conference at the Hind el-Huesseini school in East Jerusalem under the banner of '40-years since the occupation of the al-Aqsa Mosque.'


Salah, who heads the Islamic Movement's northern branch in Israel, is currently facing charges of inciting violence, racism, and rebellion against the State.


Salah was alluding to last week's incident, during which Kfar Manda resident Ahmad Khatib stole a gun from a Jewish security guard and was killed when one of the guards gave chase. During the incident, ten bystanders were injured, most of them from the shooter's gun.


Several of Khatib's associates, including his father and Sheikh Salah, claimed that the police's account of the incident was fabricated and used as an excuse to justify the cold-blooded murder of Khatib by the security guard.


The surveillance footage validating the police's report - clearly showing Khatib trailing the security guard, waiting for an opportune moment and seizing his gun before heading back through the crowd and opening fire – was doctored and fictitious, they said.


"Israel is trying to enforce its control over parts of the al-Aqsa Mosque through its firepower and 'Jewify' Jerusalem," Salah told the audience. "Israel is planning to divide the al-Aqsa Mosque between Jews and Muslims and the behavior of the police proves this. This is evident in the Jerusalem police's investigations of mosque preachers."


Salah urged Arab Israelis and East Jerusalem Palestinians to visit the mosque regularly in order to strengthen Muslim control of the area.


The controversial Salah was arrested last February in Jerusalem for urging a third Palestinian uprising against Israel during a protest against a dig near the Old City's Mugrabi Gate, leading up to the Temple Mount.


"We tell every Muslim and Arab that their duty is to aid the Palestinian people with launching a third intifada," he said then. "Our most beautiful moment will be when we meet God as martyrs in the Al-Aqsa Mosque."


Salah rallied masses of followers, saying that Israel was trying to destroy the mosque. In February, a UNESCO team of experts ruled that the Israeli dig near the Mugrabi Gate posed no risk to either the al-Aqsa Mosque or the Temple Mount.


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