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PA Government claims rebuilding of Silwan synagogue south of Al-Aqsa “constitutes a new aggression against Jerusalem” and was done for political, not religious, reasons

Headline: “The [PA] government: The participation of senior Israeli officials in the inauguration of a synagogue south of the Al-Aqsa Mosque is a new aggression against Jerusalem”

“The [PA] national unity government said that the participation of senior Israeli officials in the ‘inauguration’ of a synagogue south of the Al-Aqsa Mosque constitutes a new aggression against Jerusalem, and a serious blow to the natural status and the Arab-Islamic landmarks of the city (refers to the reinauguration of a historical synagogue; see note below –Ed.).
Official [PA] Government Spokesman Yusuf Al-Mahmoud said in a statement yesterday [Aug. 25, 2017]: ‘The [Palestinian] national unity government thinks that the establishment of a synagogue in Silwan, south of the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, stems from purely political reasons that are connected to the character of the Israeli occupation government. [The synagogue] is part of the settlement enterprise and has no connection to religion’…
Al-Mahmoud again mentioned the warnings of the leadership and government against the government of Israel’s policy, which is liable to lead to religious wars that nobody wants. He demanded that the international community and free world intervene to put an end to the tensions immediately, and act seriously to establish peace and security in the entire region.”

Silwan synagogue – the Ohel Shlomo Synagogue – A historical Yemenite synagogue in the Silwan neighborhood of Jerusalem, which was destroyed after the British expelled the Yemenite Jewish residents of the neighborhood in the 1930s amid Arab riots. In 2015, the Jerusalem District Court evicted an Arab family that was living in the building, and members of the Jewish Ateret Cohanim organization moved in. The synagogue is now being restored (2017).
Israeli Minister of Agriculture Uri Ariel and Israeli Parliament Member Mordhay Yogev were present at a Torah dedication ceremony at the synagogue, on Aug. 24, 2017.

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