The head of the Islamic Movement in the Palestinian Territories Occupied in 1948 (Israel) has warned of a likely regional war in the Middle East that may lead to a third world war, through which Israel will seek to demolish Al-Aqsa Mosque.
According to Shaikh Raed Salah, the year 2010 is a fateful one for Al-Aqsa, in which he does not rule out the possibility that the Israeli occupation authorities may try to divide Al-Aqsa into different sections.
Sheikh Salah made his statements at a press conference held on 25th July shortly before he went to Israel's Ayalon Prison to begin a five-month custodial sentence for protesting against the demolition of the historic Mughrabi Gate at the Noble Sanctuary. He called on "all honest people" to protect Al-Aqsa Mosque from the various Israeli plots to destroy the historic site. His detention, he said, is a marginal issue compared to that of Jerusalem.
Calling on Arab and Islamic nations to protect Al-Aqsa Mosque from the enemies of Islam, Shaikh Raed cited a possible regional war in which Israel will seek to demolish the mosque as the biggest threat ever faced by the sanctuary.
Before entering the prison, the Shaikh said, "I'm not standing on the threshold of prison, but on the threshold of the eradication of the Israeli occupation."
Hundreds of members and supporters of the Islamic movement joined the Chairman of the High Follow-up Committee for Arab Citizens, Mohamed Zidan, Palestinian leaders, political figures, prominent personalities and delegations from the occupied Golan Heights and Jerusalem, as they escorted Sheikh Salah on his motorcade to the prison. An appeal against the prison sentence was rejected by Israel's Supreme Court last Thursday.