The Israeli security authorities have arrested Shaikh Raed Salah, the head of the Islamic movement in Israel, while he was driving near Jerusalem. He was on his way to a press conference called to mobilise Palestinians to defend Al-Aqsa Mosque when his car was pulled over by a number of security agents.
The chairman of Al-Aqsa Foundation, Ali Abu Sheikha, was in the car with Shaikh Raed at the time. "I was accompanying Shaikh Raed Salah to the press conference venue when we noticed that several Israeli intelligence vehicles were following us. The officers said that he was being arrested for 'inciting riots in Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa'." They made specific reference, said Abu Shaikha, to the call for local Palestinians to spring to the defence of Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque against Israel's Judaisation policies.
According to a local Palestinian news website, Shaikh Raed has been taken to Al-Maskobiyeh Detention Centre in Jerusalem. He is being interrogated in the presence of his lawyer, Khaled Zbarqah.
Although he is an Israeli citizen, it is expected that Shaikh Raed Salah will be excluded from Jerusalem and the Noble Sanctuary of Al-Aqsa but his detention will not be lengthy.