The sanctity and status of holy sites must be respected and protected, Britain’s Minister for the Middle East said on Wednesday, calling for immediate de-escalation after late-night Israel raids on the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Occupied East Jerusalem, Anadolu News Agency reports.
“Shocked to awake to the disturbing scenes of Israeli Security forces’ raid on the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem injuring many worshippers during Ramadan,” Tariq Ahmad said on Twitter. “Violence only fuels more violence,” he added.
Touching on the “indiscriminate firing of rockets” from the Gaza Strip to Israel and Israeli airstrikes on Gaza, which “spreads fear amongst civilians”, Ahmad called for immediate de-escalation.
On Wednesday, Israeli police said they detained 350 Palestinians from the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex, with witnesses saying they used excessive force, including tear gas.
Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It annexed the entire city in 1980, a move never recognised by the international community.