DUBAI: Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Egypt have condemned the recent storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque by hundreds of Jewish settlers under the protection of Israeli forces.
On Sunday 430 extremist settlers launched a raid on the compound’s courtyards in occupied Jerusalem, in the latest breach of one of Islam’s holiest sites.
On Tuesday the UAE condemned the settlers’ actions and reiterated its position on the need to provide greater protection for Al-Aqsa Mosque.
In a statement, the UAE’s Foreign Ministry said there should be respect for the custodial role of Jordan over the holy sites and endowments in accordance with international law. No one should be allowed to “compromise the authority of the Jerusalem Endowment Administration and Al-Aqsa Mosque.”
The ministry called on Israeli authorities to take responsibility for ending all attacks that would escalate tensions.
On Monday, Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Ministry called the Israeli actions “a blatant violation of all international norms and conventions, and a provocation to the feelings of Muslims across the world.”
The ministry stated that Tel Aviv should be held responsible for the repercussions of such actions, and urged the international community to assume its responsibilities to protect civilians, and find ways to end the conflict.
Egypt’s Foreign Ministry called on Israel to “immediately stop any actions that would provoke the feelings of millions of Muslims around the world and stoke violence in the occupied Palestinian territories.”
On Monday Saudi Arabia, the European Union, Arab League, Egypt and Jordan announced a Peace Day Efforts initiative to “reinvigorate” the Palestine-Israel peace process, according to a statement released by the parties.
The meeting was held in New York, on the sidelines of the 78th UN General Assembly, and was attended by the Arab League’s Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit, Jordan’s Deputy Prime Minister Ayman Safadi, and Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan.
“The two-state solution must return to the forefront, we now see a continuing escalation in the occupied territories,” Prince Faisal said after the meeting.
The plan is part of the Arab Peace Initiative, a comprehensive proposal that seeks to ensure peace and development in the region.