The Organization of the Islamic Conference warns Israel of the far-right minister’s visit to Al-Aqsa
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has issued a warning of possible Israeli attacks on Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem, following a provocative visit by the far-right security minister to the Haram al-Sharif.
In a statement following an extraordinary meeting on Tuesday, the Jeddah-based organization called for sanctions against Israel’s far-right National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir for violating the sanctity of the inflamed site.
Last week, bin Gvir visited the Al-Aqsa compound, sparking a storm of condemnation from countries around the world, including Jordan, Turkey, the United States, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Pakistan.
The Organization of the Islamic Conference considered Ben Gvir’s visit “a serious provocation that hurts the feelings of Muslims around the world and a flagrant violation of international law, relevant United Nations resolutions, the historical and legal status quo in Jerusalem (Jerusalem), its sanctities and all relevant international standards.”
The Islamic Assembly strongly condemned the “repeated attacks of Israeli settlers” on holy places and Christian property, including the recent attack on the endowments of the Orthodox Church in Bab al-Khalil and Silwan, and the desecration and destruction of Christian cemeteries. On Mount Zion, east of Jerusalem.
The Organization of the Islamic Conference urged the UN Security Council to “assume its responsibilities” and stop the dangerous Israeli escalation in occupied East Jerusalem.
The statement affirmed Palestinian sovereignty over “Al-Quds Al-Sharif (East Jerusalem) and all its sanctities, its ancient town and its walls,” stressing that all measures taken by the Israeli occupation authorities to change its legal character and status. The city or its demographic composition is “null and void and has no legal effect”.
The Palestinians accuse Israel of working systematically to Judaize East Jerusalem, where Al-Aqsa is located, and to obliterate its Arab and Islamic identity.
For Muslims, Al-Aqsa represents the third holiest site in the world. On the other hand, Jews call the area the Temple Mount, saying that it was the site of two Jewish temples in ancient times.
Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It annexed the entire city in 1980, in a move not recognized by the international community.