Today marks the second week after the Noble Sanctuary (Ḥaram al-Sharif) in Jerusalem was re-opened after it was shut down for the first time in nearly two decades.
Fortress like security barricades and armed check points continue to greet worshippers at the holy site, a move which has enraged locals who feel that such measures blight one of the holiest places in Islam.
The Nobel Sanctuary is the location of the al-Aqsa Mosque, the place where the Islamic Prophet Muhammad travelled to during the Night Journey from Mecca to Jerusalem in the year 621. The golden-domed mosque Qubbat As-Sakhrah is also located within the Noble Sanctuary. The site is also considered holy by Christians and Jews and is of great interest to historians and archaeologists.
Many Palestinian Muslim leaders and political groups called on worshippers to descend on the mosque for prayers in a show of defiance to Israel authorities who have erected heavy security barriers around the Noble Sanctuary.
The Noble Sanctuary was closed earlier in July of this year after the death of two Israel police-officers. The alleged assailants, all Israeli citizens of Arab origin were later killed.
Fatah, the political party of Palestinian President has joined with other Palestinian groups in calling for a ‘Day of Rage’ against the new encroachments on the Nobel Sanctuary.
Thus far, one Palestinian teen has been killed by an Israeli settler while 50 people are reported injured after Israeli officers fired on demonstrators at close range. The slain child was named as Mohammad Sharif, age 17.
A second Palestinian, aged 18 was later also murdered by Israelis. A third day was reported hours later.