The Council for the maintenance of Islamic cemeteries in Jerusalem confirmed that the Israeli occupation has begun bulldozing an area of the Ma’man Allah cemetery near the grave of the Mamluke leader, Al Amir al Kabki, who was buried in the cemetery 800 years ago.
In a statement released today, Monday 4th January, the Council’s chair, Mustafa Abu Zahra disclosed he contacted the municipality and demanded they halt the operations. The latter claimed they were merely protecting the site from erosion because of its fragility. Abu Zahara said the actions of the occupation were clearly intended to wipe out the Islamic graves after it had previously obliterated 70% of them from the western part of the cemetery and turned the area into a leisure park.
The original area of Ma’man Allah is 180 dunums (one dunum is equivalent to one quarter acre). The official said the Israeli Occupation exhumed 40 graves and placed their remains in boxes. For the past five years the council has been coordinating efforts with Al-Aqsa Foundation for Religious Endowments and Heritage to preserve the sites. Abu Zahra called on Arab countries to help preserve the sites in the face of annihilation by the Occupation.