For Immediate Release
MAS Denounces Closure of Al Aqsa Mosque
(Washington D.C., 7/19/17) — The Muslim American Society condemns the closing of Al Aqsa Mosque in East Jerusalem, the third holiest site for Muslims all around the world. This closure was enacted last Friday after a deadly shootout involving 2 Israelis and 3 Palestinians. It prevented the observance of Salat Al-Jumu’a inside the Mosque. Closure of the Mosque after the horrific incidents serves as a measure of collective punishment, wholly unwarranted, to the Palestinian people and all who seek to worship at the Holy site. Worse, it is an insult to the integrity and dignity of all those who hold the site sacred.
The Israeli settler’s continuous break-in of Al Aqsa mosque and the sanction of such aggressions by the Israeli officials is a clear provocation for violence and an intimidation of the Palestinian people and Muslims around the world. The closing of Al Aqsa Mosque and the presence of Israeli military on its premise is a clear violation of UN rules, Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights- that speaks to the inalienable rights of all to practice their faith- and other international laws, by the occupying forces. Further, the closure continues to incite violence as clashes between Israeli police and worshippers, who continue to observe their prayers in the streets surrounding the Mosque, are on the escalation. Most recently, on Tuesday July 18th, while Israeli officers forcefully dispersed worshippers after the Isha’i prayers, the Imam of Al-Aqsa Mosque, Shaikh Ikrima Sabri was shot outside the Mosque. He is currently hospitalized for his injuries.
MAS calls for the immediate opening of Al Aqsa Mosque, the safety and security of its religious leaders and the freedom of the Palestinian people to pray in their Mosque anytime without intimidation, provocation, or any other offensive means and behaviors. We call upon our government to pressure the Israeli government and demand immediate opening of the Aqsa Mosque, and stop the provocation by settlers and Israeli military and officials.
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The Muslim American Society (MAS) is a dynamic charitable, religious, social, cultural, and educational, organization. Our mission is to Move People to Strive for God-Consciousness, Liberty and Justice, and to Convey Islam with Utmost Clarity.