Is­rael re­opens Jerusalem holy site af­ter at­tack that killed 2

Sun Sentinel Palm Beach Edition - - NATION & WORLD -

JERUSALEM — Hun­dreds of Mus­lim wor­ship­pers vis­ited a Jerusalem holy site Sunday af­ter Is­rael re­opened the com­pound fol­low­ing a rare clo­sure in re­sponse to a deadly shoot­ing last week that raised con­cerns about wider un­rest.

For the first time in decades, Is­rael closed the site — known to Mus­lims as the No­ble Sanc­tu­ary and to Jews as the Tem­ple Mount — on Fri­day af­ter three Arab cit­i­zens of Is­rael opened fire from the sa­cred site with au­to­matic weapons, killing two po­lice of­fi­cers. The three were later shot dead in­side the com­pound.

Prime Min­is­ter Ben­jamin Ne­tanyahu said that fol­low­ing con­sul­ta­tions with se­cu­rity of­fi­cials the site would be re­opened Sunday af­ter­noon with in­creased se­cu­rity mea­sures that in­cluded metal de­tec­tors at the en­trance gates and ad­di­tional se­cu­rity cam­eras.

At mid­day, Is­raeli po­lice opened two of the gates to the com­pound to al­low wor­ship­pers to en­ter through the newly erected de­tec­tors. Po­lice said some wor­ship­pers re­fused to go through them and knelt to pray out­side in­stead. But de­spite con­cerns that the new mea­sures could slow move­ment and spark re­newed ten­sions, po­lice said they ap­peared to be work­ing fine and that 200 peo­ple had al­ready passed through.

Is­rael did not co­or­di­nate the changes with Jor­dan, which serves as the cus­to­dian of the Mus­lim-ad­min­is­tered site, ac­cord­ing to a Jor­da­nian of­fi­cial.

Jor­dan’s stance is that any­thing in­stalled at the site must be ap­proved by the Waqf, or Mus­lim ad­min­is­tra­tion, and can­not change the sta­tus quo, said the of­fi­cial who spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause he was not au­tho­rized to discuss the still de­vel­op­ing sit­u­a­tion with re­porters.

AH­MAD GHARABLI/GETTY-AFP

Mus­lims pray Sunday near the en­trance of a holy site that Is­rael re­opened af­ter a deadly Fri­day at­tack. Some wor­ship­pers re­fused to en­ter be­cause of new se­cu­rity mea­sures.

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