7/15/2013, Av 8, 5773
Hundreds of pilgrims forced from Judaism's holiest site by Muslim mob. Activist: "Police failed to carry out their duties again"
by Gil Ronen and Ari Soffer
Hundreds of Jews came to the Temple Mount Monday in honor of Tisha B'Av, the anniversary of the destruction of the two Jewish Temples by the Babylonian and Roman empires respectively.
But their visit was cut short as Muslim worshippers physically blocked them and appeared to be preparing a riot.
Michael Fua, of the Jewish Leadership faction of the Israeli Likud Party, was at the Mount.
"Today, on the eve of Tisha B'Av, the Israel Police failed do discharge its duties again," Fua accused. "Hundreds of Jews who came to the Mount from all parts of the Land of Israel, were kept waiting for a long time at the entrance to the Mount, at the only gate where Jews are allowed to pass, while hundreds of Muslims entered from the other gates without any check or delay.
"As the third group that the police allowed inside entered the Mount, many Muslims began to gather and shout. As usual, instead of preventing the rioters from ascending to the Mount and grouping together, the police quickly informed the Jewish pilgrims that it will not allow them to carry out a full tour of the Mount, and quickly made them leave through the nearest gate."
Fua, who videotaped the event, explained: “The video shows Dr. Yoel Elitzur and some of the ascenders, faced by the Muslim mob that is familiar to us from the previous days. It s amazing to see how the Israel Police plays into the hands of the Muslim rioters, and actually encourages them to threaten and run amok.
"This scenario is one that is known in advance and it is time that the police change their behavior, so that the scenario may change, too.”