Israel Attacks Al-Aqsa Two Nights in a Row, Beating Worshipers at Holy Site

PALESTINE - ISRAEL, 10 Apr 2023

Mariam Barghouti | Mondoweiss - TRANSCEND Media Service

Israeli forces conducted violent raids on the Al Aqsa Mosque compound two nights in a row, beating worshipers and forcing Palestinians out of the holy site in order to make way for Jewish pilgrims on Passover.

Israeli forces attack Palestinian worshipers in al-Aqsa Mosque raid, 5 Apr 2023.
| Middle East Eye

6 Apr 2023 – Yesterday evening , the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem was full of Muslim worshipers praying into the night during the holy month of Ramadan. Earlier that morning, worshipers were beaten, and forced out of the holy mosque’s prayer halls.

In the midst of night prayers Wednesday [5 Apr], Israeli forces stormed the compound again with weapons and riot gear, unleashing a coordinated and organized attack against worshipers for the second time in less than 24 hours.

Translation: Yesterday’s scene is repeated. The occupation forces storm the Qibli prayer hall and beat the worshipers inside it.

As Israeli Jewish settlers rally for holding Passover animal sacrifices in the mosque’s compound, Muslim worshipers continue to be attacked with teargas, beatings, and extended imprisonment in some of Israel’s most notorious interrogation cells in Jerusalem.

Here is an overview of the last 24 hours in Jerusalem.

A war wages inside a space of prayer

In the early morning hours of Wednesday, April 5, just past midnight, armed Israeli forces invaded the compound of Al-Aqsa mosque in the Old City of Jerusalem.

Palestinian worshippers were attacked inside the compound and the Qibli Mosque, where worshippers pray through the night during the holy month of Ramadan.

Images filmed by worshippers inside the compound and the mosque show Israeli forces firing teargas, beating worshippers, and invading a holy space with weapons. According to eye-witnesses and the Red Crescent in Jerusalem, Israeli forces fired stun grenades, teargas, and rubber bullets at worshippers.

At approximately 3:00 a.m., reports from inside Qibli mosque showed Israeli forces holding tens of Palestinian men and boys captive inside the Qibli mosque despite appeals for medical attention from injured detainees. During this time, attacks against Palestinians and confrontations from youth against Israeli forces persisted outside the walls of the Old City.

Israeli forces also denied documentation by journalists and impeded or obstructed their entry into the Old City, especially the Aqsa compound.

By 4:30 a.m. Israeli forces had moved their assault towards Bab Al-Asbat (Lions Gate) in the Old City. Videos and images taken by civilians and worshippers show Israeli forces chasing youth near the Lions Gate to arrest and beat them.

At approximately 5:00 a.m. just one hour before dawn prayers, the first of five Muslim daily prayers, Israeli forces banned entry to Al-Aqsa for all persons under the age of 40, according to residents in the city.

Israeli forces arrested more than 440 Palestinians, most of them Jerusalem residents or holding Israeli citizenship, according to Mohammad Mahmoud, a lawyer from the Wadi Hilweh Information Center. More than 65 of those detained were male children and minors. 379 of the arrested were released on the condition that they would be banished from both the Old City and the al-Aqsa compound for a period that would be later determined by Israeli courts.

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Mariam Barghouti is the Senior Palestine Correspondent for Mondoweiss.


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