Photo: Maan News Agency
Photo: Maan News Agency

Al Quds, 1 Sha’ban 1436/19 May 2015 (MINA) – An Israeli police officer on Monday struck a Palestinian tour guide in the face at one of the gates to the Al-Aqsa mosque compound, the director of the compound said.

Sheikh Omar al-Kiswani told Ma’an that Muhammad Qteish, 58, a tour guide affiliated with the Islamic trust that controls the compound, fell into an argument with an Israeli officer after he insulted female Palestinian worshipers near the compound’s Golden Gate.

The Israeli officer then struck the Palestinian tour guide in the face, al-Kiswani said, Ma’an News Agency quoted  by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting.

Separately on Monday, al-Kiswani said that around 50 right-wing Jews toured the compound under the armed protection of Israeli intelligence officers.

The incidents came a day after up to 160 right-wing Jews entered the compound to mark the anniversary of Israel’s seizure of occupied East Jerusalem’s in 1967, known by Israelis as “Jerusalem Day.”

The third holiest site in Islam, the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound is also venerated as Judaism’s most holy place as it sits where Jews believe the First and Second Temples once stood.

Since 1967 Israel has maintained an agreement with the Islamic trust that controls the Al-Aqsa compound not to allow non-Muslim prayer in the area, while Jewish prayer is allowed at the neighboring Western Wall.

However, Israeli forces regularly escort Jewish visitors to the mosque compound, leading to anger among Muslim worshipers.

Clashes broke out on Sunday across occupied East Jerusalem as Jewish hardliners paraded the streets to celebrate Jerusalem Day.

At least 29 Palestinians were injured during the clashes, and Israeli forces arrested five Palestinians near Jerusalem’s Old City. (T/P010/R03)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)