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Photo: Israel Police
The scene at al-Aqsa mosque after rioters use holy site as base.
Photo: Israel Police
Foreign ambassadors undergo hasbara on Temple Mount violence
Police chief, deputy foreign minister briefs foreign dignitaries on escalation on Temple Mount; videos and photos show rioters launching fireworks and Molotov cocktails from within al-Aqsa mosque.
More than 60 foreign ambassadors and diplomats gathered on Wednesday at the Foreign Ministry for a special briefing held by Police Commissioner Yohanan Danino and Deputy Foreign Minister Tzachi Hanegbi on the escalation of violence in Jerusalem, with a focus on the clashes that have occurred at the Temple Mount.

 

 

The meeting was part of a diplomatic campaign led by the Foreign Ministry in the past few days in order to refute the allegations by the Palestinian Authority that Israel has changed the status-quo at the Temple Mount and plans to harm the al-Aqsa mosque.

 

Foreign officials recive photograph showing Palestinian rioters at al-Aqsa mosque creating a barrier using trash cans and furniture taken from the mosque. (Photo: Israel Police) (Photo: Israel Police)
Foreign officials recive photograph showing Palestinian rioters at al-Aqsa mosque creating a barrier using trash cans and furniture taken from the mosque. (Photo: Israel Police)

 

At the briefing, members of the diplomatic corps where shown photographs and videos depicting the acts of incitement and violence at the Temple Mount.

 

One video showed Palestinian rioters building a barrier made out of trash cans and furniture that was in the al-Aqsa mosque and hurling fireworks from within the mosque filled with carpets, wooden beams and other materials that could catch fire easily.

 

More than 60 foreign diplomats view photograph of Palestinians launching fireworks at police at the Temple Mount at a briefing held on Wednesday. (Photo: Israel Police) (Photo: Israel Police)
More than 60 foreign diplomats view photograph of Palestinians launching fireworks at police at the Temple Mount at a briefing held on Wednesday. (Photo: Israel Police)

 

Palestinians depicted using fireworks as weapons, throwing them at Police outside of al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. (Photo: Israel Police) (Photo: Israel Police)
Palestinians depicted using fireworks as weapons, throwing them at Police outside of al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. (Photo: Israel Police)

 

The foreign ambassadors and diplomats also saw a video that showed Israeli police forces showing restraint against rioters, who had amounted inside the mosque and were launching fireworks from close range at Israeli officers who did not use tear gas against the rioters.

 

The footage shows severe damage caused to the furniture and carpets in the mosque from the fireworks, while older Muslim worshipers are seen standing on the side while their request to pray is denied because of the rioters in the mosque.

 

Palestinians are shown wearing plastic bags and gloves while rioting from within al-Aqsa mosque. (Photo: Israel Police) (Photo: Israel Police)
Palestinians are shown wearing plastic bags and gloves while rioting from within al-Aqsa mosque. (Photo: Israel Police)

 

Alongside the video footage, embassy representatives were shown photographs that depicted rioters throwing Molotov cocktails from within the al-Aqsa mosque, known to Jews as the Temple Mount, and hurling them towards Israeli police officers.

 

"Israel has maintained and will continue to maintain the status-quo at the Temple Mount and Jordan's special role as the protector of Islamic holy sites in Jerusalem and will oppose any attempt to change it," Hangebi said during the meeting with ambassadors.

 

"Any other statement is a private opinion that does not represent the government of Israel," Hanegbi added.

 

"Israel has freedom of religion for all faiths and is committed to the protection of holy sites. Unfortunately, we are witnessing the upsurge of violence by Palestinians that is being backed up by incitement by Palestinian officials," Hanegbi continued.

 

Danino said to the ambassadors and diplomats: "The main role of Israel's police is to maintain public peace and security throughout the country and especially in Jerusalem, which is a central part of our mission."

 

A photo shows Palestinian rioters throwing rocks from al-Aqsa mosque at Israeli police patrolling the area. (Photo: Israel Police) (Photo: Israel Police)
A photo shows Palestinian rioters throwing rocks from al-Aqsa mosque at Israeli police patrolling the area. (Photo: Israel Police)

 

During the briefing, the Foreign Ministry staff handed out an official document to the ambassadors which stated that: "In the past few months, radical Palestinians have attempted to disrupt the status quo and have prevented Jews and Christians from visiting the Temple Mount.

 

"Palestinian rioters, incited by Hamas and radical factions of the Islamic Movement, attacked visitors and police officers alike with stones and fireworks – while using the al-Aqsa mosque as a base for their actions. Israeli authorities were able to contain the attempts by Islamic extremists to escalate the situation at the Temple Mount.

 

"The ridiculous accusations that Israel is planning to harm al-Aqsa mosque has no basis. The fact that not only Islamic radicals but central Palestinian leaders are behind these accusations is dangerous and frightful.

 

"Anyone who violates the law will be handled accordingly by police, whether he is Muslim, Jewish or belonging to any other religion. Israel considers freedom of religion and worship as a supreme value. Jewish holy sites such as the Western Wall are open to visitors of all religions as are Christian holy sites in Jerusalem," the document said.

 


פרסום ראשון: 11.13.14, 10:42
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