The US is “extremely concerned” about tensions around the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Occupied East Jerusalem and urged “all sides” to exercise restraint, Anadolu News Agency reports.
“We remain extremely concerned by the continuing violence, and we urge all sides to avoid further escalation,” White House National Security Council spokesman, John Kirby, told reporters during a news conference.
“It’s imperative, now more than ever, that both Israelis and Palestinians work together to de-escalate this tension and to restore a sense of calm,” he added.
Asked why there was no US condemnation of the Israeli attack on Palestinian worshippers, Kirby responded by saying: “I think we have a very strong track record of speaking out against violence all around the world, and the death and injury caused to people of all faiths.”
His remarks came after tensions escalated when Israeli police detained around 350 worshipers from inside the complex.
A group of Palestinians had maintained a presence in the Al-Qibli Prayer Hall in the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex after Jewish settlers called for a raid on the mosque.