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Abbas’ advisor: “Israel was aiming to draw the region into a religious war”

"Attorney Ahmed Al-Ruweidi, advisor to Abbas on Jerusalem Affairs, said that Israel was aiming to draw the region into a religious war through the steps it is implementing at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, with the aim of dividing it according to place and time. In addition, Al-Ruweidi said the fact that the occupation authorities consider the [Palestinian] citizens of Jerusalem as residents, not citizens, is part of their policy to empty the city of its original inhabitants in favor of the settlements, toward realizing the plan known as ‘greater Jerusalem,’ which aims at isolating the city from its Palestinian surroundings, and to destroy the possibility of establishing a Palestinian state.”

Note: The physical division and division according to time refers to a proposed law (May 2013) being reviewed in Israeli Parliament that would allow for both Jews and Muslims to pray on the Temple Mount. The law seeks to implement separate prayer times for Muslims and Jews at the site.