The Palestinian Authority circulated a sermon speech it wants imams to use to incite worshipers during Friday sermons at local mosques.
The Palestinian Authority (PA), with President Mahmoud Abbas’ direct oversight, authorizes every week a text which is to be read at mosques throughout the PA on Friday.
TPS obtained a copy of this upcoming Friday’s sermon, which emphasizes the struggle for the Sha’ar Ha’rachamim (Golden Gate) area, which has recently been illegally commandeered by the Muslim Waqf.
TPS learned that the authorized text initially touched on certain issues, but was changed following a directive by Abbas, to focus on the Golden Gate crisis. The speech’s emphasis is that the Temple Mount has been shut down by Israel and that a struggle is required to liberate it.
The sermon calls for a “nafere,” a mass drive to take over the Golden Gate and the Temple Mount.
Such previous religious incitement within the PA has led to mass deadly violence against Israel, including the 2015 wave of terror attacks which was sparked by rumors that Israel was planning to take over the Temple Mount.
Tensions on the Temple Mount have been high after the Waqf’s recent illegal takeover of the Golden Gate area, known by the Muslims as the Bab al-Rahma. The area, which was shut down in 2003 and which was forcefully opened by the Waqf three weeks ago, remains open despite Israeli attempts to close it.
Threats of Violence
The Muslims, as well as the Hamas terror organization, have threatened an outbreak of violence if Israel attempts to re-shut the area.
Sources in the Waqf in Jerusalem have confirmed that there are indications of a new, coordinated arrangement between Israel and Jordan on the Golden Gate issue. Contacts are being maintained between the two sides with the objective of keeping the compound open to Muslims while limiting the scope of activity in the area.
The sources confirmed that high-level political contacts are taking place, but that the PA is working to exploit the events on the Temple Mount to increase its influence on the decision-making system around the mosques.
The Mufti of Jerusalem has threatened a new Intifada, and Arab sources in Jerusalem have expressed their concern that because of the approaching arrangement between Israel and Jordan, Fatah and Mourabitoun elements on behalf of the Islamic Movement are operating to generate another escalation.
They further noted that Turkey, which finances the activities of the Muslim Brotherhood on the Temple Mount, is also interested in creating other arrangements that undermine Jordanian authority. Jordan is aware of the Turks’ efforts.
Photographs documenting Israeli police officers entering the Golden Gate compound and allegations of police activity in the compound are being used on social networks to escalate the violence in Jerusalem.
Igniting a Religious War
Israeli Minister of Internal Security and Strategic Affairs Gilad Erdan warned that Abbas was on the way to igniting a religious war.
“Abu Mazen (Abbas) continues to lie and incite violence, together with the Mourabitoun and Hamas terror organizations, in their attempt to ignite a fire and cause a religious war on the Temple Mount,” Erdan charged Wednesday.
The Mourabitoun and Mourabitat are groups of Muslim men and women, paid to harass Jewish visitors at the Temple Mount and generate violent incidents. Israel outlawed the organization in September 2015.
“We will not allow this and we will continue to act to restore peace to the mountain,” Erdan stated, warning that “any act of violence or attempt to harm Israeli sovereignty on the Temple Mount will meet the determination and strong response of the Israel Police.”
“I reiterate: No additional mosque will be built on the Temple Mount and we will do everything necessary to maintain the status quo,” he concluded.