Hamas Condemns Israeli Excavations At Al-Aqsa

Hamas has called on the international community to take urgent action to protect Al-Aqsa Mosque from the Israeli excavations that are endangering its foundations.

In a statement issued yesterday, Hamas said the “continued excavations carried out by the Zionist occupation authorities in the areas of the Al-Buraq Wall and the Umayyad palaces are a direct threat to the foundations and walls of the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, and an attempt to obliterate the Islamic and historical landmarks of the city of Jerusalem.”

Last year, Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Sheikh Mohammed Hussein, said that the Israeli excavations southwest of Al-Aqsa Mosque increased in the recent period to include multiple places at the same time.

Sheikh Hussein said the excavations are part of Israel’s Judaization plans, arguing that the occupation is exploiting the lockdown measures to carry out further digs.

It is widely believed that the ongoing aggression is a part of the larger Zionist project that seeks to end the Palestinian presence in East Jerusalem. Though under international law, Israel has no rights in Jerusalem, Israel continues to seize parts of the land through settlements. The United Nations (UN) has repeatedly demanded the Israeli withdrawal from lands occupied in 1967, including East Jerusalem.

The United Nations and the European Union have condemned Israeli ill-treatment of Palestinians. However, no real change has happened on the ground. Israel announces every week its plan for constructing new settlements. In other words, increasing the number of Jews, while decreasing the number of Palestinians, is the main priority for Israel.

According to Amnesty International (2019), Israel has committed war crimes, including the illegal detention of Palestinians and the unlawful killing of innocent civilians and children.

Months ago, Amnesty International, an international human rights organization published a report on the human rights situation in the occupied territories which prompted wide outrage in Tel Aviv.

The report explicitly accuses Israel of “apartheid” and “institutionalized and systematic discrimination against Palestinians.” Amnesty said it has “concluded that Israel has perpetrated the international wrong of apartheid as a human-rights violation and a violation of public international law.”

The report, titled “Israel’s Apartheid Against Palestinians: Cruel System of Domination and Crime Against Humanity,” accuses Israel of “institutionalized segregation and discrimination against Palestinians, as a racial group, in all areas under its control, amounts to a system of apartheid, and a serious violation of Israel’s human rights obligations.”

Now is the right time to expose Israel’s real face. Though the US and many other countries have condemned the Israeli move, no real change has happened on the ground. Instead of bullying China and Iran for “terrorizing” the world, the US should hold Israel responsible for it is “war crimes”.

Last year, the Jordanian Foreign Ministry called on Israel to “immediately” end all excavations in al-Buraq Square.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Deifallah Fayez reiterated Jordan’s position on Israeli plans, denouncing all unilateral Israeli measures in the occupied East Jerusalem, in the Old City, and in the vicinity of Al-Aqsa Mosque, adding they are in violation of international law.

Jordan is the official supervisor of al-Aqsa Mosque, based on international agreements and the agreements with Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) as well. 

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