You are here

Israel dismantles Bab Al Magharbeh structure ‘under Jordan’s pressure’ — report

By JT - Sep 03,2014 - Last updated at Sep 03,2014

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM — Israel on Wednesday started dismantling the wooden ramp recently built at Bab Al Magharbeh in occupied Jerusalem, following pressure from Jordan and international entities, Israeli media reported.  

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered the removal of the wooden ramp built at Bab Al Magharbeh, two weeks onto its construction after Tel Aviv came under Jordanian and international pressure in this regard, the reports said.

Quoting an Israeli official, Israeli newspaper “Haaretz” said the construction was not authorised and was set up by local decisions without obtaining approval from higher political authorities.

Israeli officials said the move came at the request of the Jordanian government, adding that the prime minister’s office “has ultimate jurisdiction — because of the sensitivity of the area — for the site”.

Jordan has sent several strong-worded messages to Israel directly and through diplomatic channels, stressing that the construction of the wooden passage is an aggression on the religious and heritage sites within Al Aqsa Mosque, according to the Jordan News Agency, Petra.  

The issue of Bab Al Magharbeh, the largest entrance for non-Muslim visitors to Al Aqsa Mosque compound, began in 2004, after the old passage collapsed and the Israeli authorities erected a “temporary” wooden bridge. 

Back then, the unilateral Israeli measure sparked international and Jordanian criticism of Israel as it was seen as altering the identity of the religious and heritage sites at Al Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest shrine in Islam. Earlier this week, Minister of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs Hayel Dawood said Israeli occupation authorities must immediately stop its “acts of sabotage” at the holy compound.

As per the Jordanian-Israeli peace treaty of 1994, the Hashemites are the custodians of Islamic sites in the Old City of Jerusalem.  

107 users have voted.


Get top stories and blog posts emailed to you each day.