The Temple Institute: More Moslem Destruction of Temple Mount Feared

 

 


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More Moslem Destruction of Temple Mount Feared

reprinted from Arutz Sheva
13:09 Nov 09, '05 / 7 Cheshvan 5766

by Hillel Fendel

The Committee to Prevent Temple Mount Artifacts Desecration warns that Muslim Waqf construction works are once again underway - this time at the Temple entrance path taken by Jews 2,000 years ago.

The Committee sent a letter on the matter this week to the Prime Minister and to the Director of the Antiquities Authority. The letter states that new information has been received indicating the Waqf's intention to continue its "refurbishing" works on the Mount.

Yisrael Caspi, an active member of the Committee, told Arutz-7, "For some years now we have been standing guard to try to have the Waqf stop its destruction works. The Waqf is trying to take over the Mount and make it a totally Moslem site, with no Jewish presence."

"The problem is that the Prime Minister has neutralized all other elements - the Minister of Public Security, the Education Ministry, and the Antiquities Authority - and has taken full control of the situation. And the cycle is always the same: The government gives the Waqf a permit for refurbishing and the like, then the Waqf starts building and turning the area into a mosque, while destroying or hiding Jewish artifacts, and then we are not even allowed into the sites. This cycle has to be stopped!"

Caspi said that the latest information indicates that the Waqf plans to begin work at the site known as the Hatunya, adjacent to the Southern Wall excavations and the Dung Gate entrance to the Western Wall.

"A staircase leads from the Temple Mount plaza downward under the Al Aksa mosque [south of the Dome of the Rock]," he said, "to two tunnels built by King Herod 2,000 years ago. The tunnels served the Jews who entered the Holy Temple from the Hulda Gate on the Southern Wall of the Temple Mount. Today, we see the Hulda Gate, but just to the left is a building called the Hatunya, built several hundred years ago. The Waqf wants to excavate the tunnels and the Hatunya, and, based on past experience, turn it into yet another mosque - while hiding or destroying Jewish artifacts."

"We firmly object to granting the Waqf a construction permit for its Temple Mount works," the Comittee's letter states, "and we demand that all work be carried out only under the supervision of the Antiquities Authority."

Caspi said, "Our past experience has shown that the Waqf does not exactly have an interest in preserving the archaeological findings there, and especially not the Jewish ones. On the contrary: They want to hide and even destroy all Jewish findings. This is our concern. We demand that the Antiquities Authority - which is not taking a strong enough position on this issue - be responsible once again for what goes on there."

"In the past," Caspi said, "the government of Israel gave a permit for Waqf renovations in the Solomon's Stables area of the Temple Mount and under the Al Aqsa mosque [just south of the Dome of the Rock]. The bottom line was that the works were done without supervision, archaeological findings are feared hidden and destroyed, new mosques were built on the Temple Mount, and Jews are prevented from visiting the most important Jewish sites in history."

Caspi said that while he and his colleagues try - so far with little success - to find MKs or others who can intervene with the Prime Minister on this issue, the public can do its part as well: "They should fax the Prime Minister's Office [at 02-670-5475 from within Israel; +9722-670-5475 from abroad] and protest the fact that his policies are allowing the Moslems to totally take over our holiest site and keep us, and our history, out."

For more information, send email to itac45@inter.net.il

 

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