Hundreds of Israeli settlers on Sunday forced their way into the flashpoint Al-Aqsa Mosque complex in occupied East Jerusalem to celebrate the Jewish New Year, reports Anadolu Agency.
Israeli settlers observe the Rosh Hashanah (New Year) holiday from September 15 to September 17 this year. They will also mark the Sukkot holiday at the end of September and the Simhat Torah holiday on October 6.
In a statement, the Jordan-run Islamic Waqf Department said Israeli forces had emptied the Al-Aqsa complex from Palestinian worshippers before allowing settlers in.
According to the statement, Palestinians under 50 years old were prevented from entering the site.
A number of Palestinians were arrested by Israeli forces from inside the complex, local sources said.
There was no comment from the Israeli authorities on the report.
For Muslims, Al-Aqsa represents the world’s third-holiest site. Jews, for their part, call the area the Temple Mount, saying it was the site of two ancient Jewish temples.
Israel occupied East Jerusalem, where Al-Aqsa complex is located, during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It annexed the entire city in 1980 in a move never recognised by the international community.