Palestinian premier Ismail Haneyya on Tuesday called for a new Intifada (uprising) in the West Bank and occupied Jerusalem in light of the Israeli decision to annex the Ibrahimi and Bilal Mosques to the so called Jewish historical sites in Palestine.
This came during a sit-in organized by the Palestinian legislative council (PLC) in Gaza city attended by representatives of factions, lawmakers and dignitaries.
Haneyya also condemned the Palestinian Authority (PA) for declaring its intention to return to the negotiation table while Israel, on the ground, escalates its violations against the Islamic holy sites in Jerusalem and the West Bank.
He demanded the PA to immediately release all political prisoners from its jails and end its negotiations and security coordination with Israel in response to the Israeli decision, stressing that the current Israeli escalation entails making sacrifices for Palestine.
“The occupation is illegitimate and everything comes from it is invalid. We will not recognize its decisions. Jerusalem, the land, the Ibrahimi and Bilal Mosques are all ours,” the premier highlighted.
For his part, senior Islamic Jihad leader Khaled Al-Batesh said during the sit-in that Israel’s decision to annex two mosques to its alleged historical sites is null and void exactly as its occupation of the Palestinian land.
“The language of force, unity and resistance must be used with the occupation in order to make the Zionist enemy get back the sanity it has lost and backtrack on making such decisions,” Batesh stressed.
He also emphasized that this annexation decision was taken because the Israeli occupation was unable to prove its alleged historical presence in Palestine, so it is now trying to steal and appropriate the Islamic holy sites in order to invent a history for its people.
In a speech delivered in the sit-in through the phone, PLC speaker Dr. Aziz Dweik said that the Israeli decision violates all international norms and agreements, stressing that the Mosques are purely Islamic and belong exclusively to Muslims.
Dr. Dweik also noted that the Palestinian Muslims will never forsake the Christian holy sites for they are respected by Islam as well.
For his part, Dr. Ahmed Bahar, the first deputy speaker of the PLC, called on the Arab leaders to put the Israeli escalation against the Islamic holy shrines on the top of the agenda of the Arab summit to be held in Libya and to take serious action in this regard.
Dr. Bahar affirmed that the Palestinian people will not stand idly watching Israel committing such dangerous violations against their holy places.
“This step exceeded all red lines and would be a prelude to Judaizing the Aqsa Mosque and all Islamic and Christian holy sites,” the deputy speaker warned, adding that Israel’s persistence in targeting the holy places in Palestine would bring about a third Intifada.
In the same context, Hamas spokesman in northern Gaza Sam’an Attallah underscored that the Israeli decision to seize two mosques in the West Bank is a dangerous step in the history of the religious war between Muslims and Jews.
Attallah added in a press statement to Hamas information office on Tuesday that the Israeli claim that the Ibrahimi and Bilal Mosques are part of their religious heritage is groundless, emphasizing the two Mosques are purely part of the Islamic legacy.
In a related incident, Mahmoud Abbas’s militias on Tuesday morning quelled a march held near Bilal Mosque in Bethlehem, south of the West Bank.
Palestinian sources told the Palestinian information center (PIC) that Abbas’s militias prevented Palestinian young men from throwing stones at Israeli troops present near the Mosque and chased many others who tried to reach the area.