For third consecutive Friday, Israel prevents Palestinians from entering Al-Aqsa Mosque

Israeli security forces take security measures in front of gates of Al-Aqsa Mosque (Mostafa Alkharouf -Anadolu Agency)

Middle East Monitor  /  October 10, 2020

The Israeli occupation police have prevented Palestinians from entering Al-Aqsa Mosque and performing Friday prayer for the third consecutive week, Anadolu Agency reported.

Eyewitnesses disclosed that the Israeli occupation police were deployed at the outer entrances of Jerusalem’s Old City and prevented every Palestinian from entering into the area.

Only Palestinian residents of the Old City were allowed to enter the mosque and perform Friday prayer.

The Israeli police claimed that the restrictions on reaching the mosque are part of lockdown measures put in place three weeks ago by the Israeli occupation authorities in a bid to fight the spread of COVID-19. The lockdown is set to end on 14 October.

Around 10,000 Palestinians have been performing Friday prayer since the outbreak of COVID-19, while prior to the pandemic, at least 50,000 worshippers used to pray on Fridays.

The number of COVID-19 cases in Israel is currently at 287,858 with 1,886 deaths.