Israeli forces attack Palestinian worshipers in Al-Aqsa
Israeli forces attacked Palestinian worshipers in Jerusalem's flashpoint Al-Aqsa mosque complex on Aug. 11, injuring at least 37, according to a Palestinian official.
“A number of Palestinians were injured during clashes with Israeli forces inside the Al-Aqsa mosque compound,” said Firas al-Dibs, a spokesman for Jerusalem's Jordan-run Religious Endowments Authority.
“The Palestinians were injured while they were preventing Jewish settlers from storming the holy mosque,” he added.
Palestinian Red Crescent, meanwhile, said that 37 Palestinian were injured after Israeli forces attacked the worshipers with rubber bullets, teargas and truncheons.
“The worshipers were moderately injured and 14 of them were transferred to hospitals for further treatment,” it added.
Earlier on Aug. 11, Israeli police prevented settlers from storming the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Israeli media reported.
The police cited the presence of tens of thousands of Palestinian worshipers and the high possibility of clashes.
The Islamic Waqfs in Jerusalem decided to delay Eid prayers to 7.30 a.m. (0430 GMT) instead of 6.30 a.m. (0330GMT), to address settlers' call to storm the Al-Aqsa in the so-called "memory of the destruction of the Temple."
Extremist Jewish organizations, known widely as Temple Mount groups, had called for massive raids on the Al-Aqsa during this week.
Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Middle East war.
In a move never recognized by the international community, Israel annexed the entire city in 1980, claiming it as the self-proclaimed Jewish state's “eternal and undivided” capital.
Sacred to Muslims, Christians and Jews, Jerusalem is home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which for Muslims represents the world's third holiest site. Jews refer to the area as the “Temple Mount,” claiming it was the site of two prominent Jewish temples in ancient times. It also includes Church of the Holy Sepulchre, one of the most sacred Christian sites in the world.