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Al-Aqsa battle has returned Palestinian issue to centre stage, says Haniyeh

The head of the Hamas Political Bureau said on Friday that the battle of Al-Aqsa Mosque has returned the Palestinian cause to centre stage at the core of the Arab and Muslim agenda, Quds Press has reported. “What has been happening in Jerusalem for a couple of days has returned the compass to its right direction,” explained Ismail Haniyeh. “It has reinforced consideration for the principles and unity of the Palestinian people.”

The battle today as a Palestinian nation and a Muslim Ummah, added the Hamas chief, is much more than the electronic metal detectors at the Noble Sanctuary. “It is to undermine the [Israeli] occupation’s plans. The Palestinians, the Arabs and the Muslims will not let them succeed. The Palestinian people will win the battle.”

Haniyeh made his comments during the Friday sermon delivered at Gaza’s Grand Mosque. He reminded worshippers of the virtues of Al-Aqsa Mosque and its position in the Muslim world.

Follow the Live Blog: Day of Rage at Al-Aqsa Mosque

The former democratically-elected Prime Minister of Palestine called for the Palestinian factions to meet and discuss how to respond to the Israeli aggression and study policies which would undermine the Zionist state’s plans in Jerusalem. Moreover, he called on the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation and the Arab League to bear their responsibilities towards Al-Aqsa Mosque and prevent Israel’s ongoing violations against the Palestinian people and their holy places.

After the Friday prayer, thousands of Palestinians across the besieged Gaza Strip took to the streets in solidarity with Al-Aqsa Mosque and their compatriots who live around it. Other such protests were held across the occupied Palestinian territories.

According to the Palestinian Red Crescent, three Palestinians were killed and more than 450 others were wounded as clashes erupted when Israeli occupation security forces cracked down on the protests.

Images by Mohammad Asad

Read: Arabs are too busy with in-fighting, says Al-Aqsa imam

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