JERUSALEM (AA) – Israeli authorities restricted the entry of Palestinians into Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem, allowing only around 5,000 Palestinians to perform the Friday prayer in the mosque.
An official from the Waqf Department in Jerusalem informed the media that these restrictions have been in place for the third consecutive Friday, leading to the yards of Al-Aqsa Mosque appearing empty of worshippers.
The Israeli police permitted only elderly Palestinians holding Jerusalem IDs to enter the mosque.
Barricades were also erected across occupied East Jerusalem, particularly in its Old City and the areas around the gates leading to the mosque. “The Israeli police turned Jerusalem into a military barracks,” an eyewitness shared.
Israeli forces were also reported to have used force to prevent worshippers from entering the mosque.
The entry restrictions at the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex are connected to the ongoing Israeli onslaught against Gaza since October 7.
Al Aqsa is one of the holiest places for Muslims, according to Islamic tradition.