update deskIsrael at War

Ramadan prayers at Temple Mount so far pass without major incident

Friday prayers at the Al Aqsa mosque have been attended each week by tens of thousands of Muslims during the holiday.

Palestinians break their fast outside the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem during Ramadan, March 30, 2024. Photo by Jamal Awad/Flash90.
Palestinians break their fast outside the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem during Ramadan, March 30, 2024. Photo by Jamal Awad/Flash90.

Hundreds of thousands of Muslims have worshipped largely without incident atop Jerusalem’s Temple Mount during Ramadan, despite Hamas’s calls for violence amid Israel’s six-month old war against the terror group.

Friday prayers at the Al Aqsa mosque have been attended each week by tens of thousands of Muslims during the holiday, including those without Israeli ID cards, highlighting anew the freedom of worship Israel upholds in the city.

The war, coupled with Hamas incitement to violence over Ramadan, had spurred fears of renewed clashes at the site. But aside from a brief scuffle on the first night of the holiday with worshippers who were denied entry, and the detention of about two dozen Muslims since the holiday began, including several suspects last Friday for “incitement and support for terrorism,” the last three weeks have been peaceful at the compound, according to police.

At the start of Ramadan, Hamas had called on Palestinians to march on Al-Aqsa to defend it against Israeli “aggression.”

According to decades-old regulations in place at the Temple Mount, Jews and Christians are barred from prayer at Judaism’s holiest site, even as Israel maintains overall security control at the compound.

Meanwhile, thousands of Christian Arabs have converged on the city ahead of Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

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