The Israeli occupation forces stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque at dawn today, Wednesday, and assaulted the worshipers inside it and arrested hundreds of them. As a result of the storming, the Palestinian resistance fired rockets from Gaza towards Israel, which responded by bombing sites in the Strip.
The Authority for Palestinian Prisoners Affairs said that the occupation forces arrested more than 500 Palestinians during their storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque, claiming that there were what it described as instigators inside, hours before the start of the Jewish Passover holiday, which is celebrated from the fifth to the 12th of April.
Pictures showed that the Israeli police dragged the women and arrested the men while escorting the worshipers out of the courtyards of Al-Aqsa Mosque, as well as showing their beatings on those in i’tikaaf and shackling their legs during their arrest.
The Palestinian Red Crescent said that dozens of worshipers in the mosque were injured during the raid, and that the occupation forces prevented its medical staff from entering the mosque to treat the injured.
After the worshipers were expelled after performing the dawn prayer, settlers stormed the Al-Aqsa courtyards, under heavy security from the Israeli occupation forces.
The extremist “Returning to the Temple Mount” movement set aside a reward of about $5,000 for every settler who can slaughter the Passover offering inside Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Meanwhile, the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth quoted an Israeli official as saying that there are international efforts to calm down after the firing of rockets from Gaza and the events in Al-Aqsa Mosque.
The occupation forces had stormed Al-Aqsa Mosque during the Tarawih prayer to evacuate it from those who were in I’tikaaf, and threw stun grenades inside the mosque, cut off the electricity supply to the Al-Qibli prayer hall, and smashed the door of the medical clinic.
The occupation policemen climbed the roof of the Qibla prayer hall and broke a number of its windows, while those in i’tikaaf locked the doors from inside the prayer hall and refused to leave it.
The minarets of Jerusalem raised calls for a general mobilization following the storming, while marches took place in the West Bank and Gaza Strip in support of Al-Aqsa Mosque and denouncing the violations of the occupation.