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Metal Detectors Lead to New Confrontations in Al-Aqsa | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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An Israeli police officer checks the identity of a Palestinian man next to newly installed metal detectors at an entrance to the Harm Al-Sharif compound that houses Al-Aqsa Mosque. Reuters photo

Ramallah- Israel on Sunday partly reopened Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque gates but placed strict security measures at the entrances of the compound, including metal detectors to search worshipers.

The new step led to bigger disputes and a war on “the sovereignty of the mosque,” leading to further confrontations near one of the gates, and leaving several Palestinians injured.

The confrontations started when dozens of worshipers refused to enter and gathered to pray at the entrances of the compound to object the new Israeli security measures.

Youssef Ideiss, Palestinian Minister of Waqf and Religious Affairs, said the Authority would not allow any party to damage the sovereignty of the Mosque.

Al-Aqsa mosque was closed for two days following a Friday attack, which saw three Arab Israelis open fire at Israeli police near the site, killing two of them, before fleeing into the compound, where they were shot dead by security forces.

Separately, Palestinian sources said that the Hamas Movement, which controls the Gaza Strip, was currently looking to gain a foothold in Algeria, with an aim to gather the party’s leaders after the majority of them left the Qatari capital, Doha, and resided in other countries.

The sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that Algeria received an official request from the Movement to open a representative bureau in the capital where it will be capable to host a number of Hamas leaders.

However, the sources said that Algeria has not yet responded to the Movement’s request.

The sources explained that the Hamas authorities do not wish to limit the presence of its leaders, who are in Gaza, Lebanon, Malaysia and Qatar, in one particular country.