23:50 GMT22 February 2020
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    Palestinian Ambassador to Russia Abdel Hafiz Nofal on Wednesday spoke about Israel's concessions over Temple Mount's situation monitoring.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Palestine considers Israel's concessions over monitoring of the situation at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, including the partial removal of metal detectors and surveillance cameras, to be a temporary and "tactical retreat," Palestinian Ambassador to Russia Abdel Hafiz Nofal said Wednesday.

    "The Israelis are slightly retreating now from their demands, but this is a temporary and tactical retreat, and the danger of this mosque being captured remains," Nofal told a news conference organized by the Rossiya Segodnya International Information Agency.

    According to Nofal, the situation around the Temple Mount may become a signal for the international community to unfreeze the deadlocked Israeli-Palestinian talks.

    "We will appeal to the United Nations and other international organizations if Israel does not annul its measures on [Jerusalem] mosques taken after July 14," Nofal added.

    The Temple Mount, which is the third holiest site in Islam, was equipped with metal detectors and surveillance video cameras to monitor its territory after deadly shooting at the site on July 14 left two Israeli police officers killed. The measures led to violent clashes in Jerusalem and the West Bank over the weekend and forced Palestine to suspend contacts with Israel over several Palestinian deaths. So far, at least four Palestinians have been killed and dozens more injured.

    In order to put an end to this violence, Israel decided to remove the metal detectors and security cameras from from the Lions' Gate, the eastern entrance to the Old City and the Temple Mount. Instead, Israel will conduct security inspections based on advanced technologies ("smart inspection"). However, Muslims still consider these efforts insufficient and demand that any and all control measures should be eliminated.

    Moreover, the Palestinians will stage a mass protest on Friday against the Israeli's initiative to ramp up security at the Temple Mount, one of Jerusalem's holy sites, Palestinian Ambassador to Russia Abdel Hafiz Nofal said Wednesday.

    "All Jerusalem citizens, including Christians, currently oppose the Israeli policy. On this coming Friday, the large-scale demonstration against the measures taken by Israel [at the Temple Mount] will take place," Nofal said at a press conference at the Rossiya Segodnya International News Agency.

    Israeli authorities decided to install metal detectors at the entrances to the Temple Mount, where the Al-Aqsa and Qubbat al-Sakhra mosques are located, and mount video cameras to monitor the territory. The security measures were a response to a deadly incident that occurred on July 14. The move resulted in violent clashes and prompted Palestinian authorities to suspend contacts with Israel over several Palestinian deaths.

    While Israel decided to remove the metal detectors on Tuesday, the Arab world called the measures insufficient.


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