Arab League Warned Israel Don't 'Playing with Fire'

Arab League Warned Israel Dont Playing with Fire
Israeli military when secure Al Aqsha mosque / REUTERS
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CAIRO - The Arab League has warned Israel is “playing with fire” over the “red line” of Jerusalem and its foreign ministers will hold an emergency meeting on Wednesday over Israeli-Palestinian violence, according to statements on Sunday.

Israel sent extra troops into the occupied West Bank on Saturday after violence erupted over Israel’s installation of metal detectors at entry points to the Noble Sanctuary-Temple Mount compound in Jerusalem’s walled Old City.

A Palestinian attacker stabbed to death three Israelis on Friday, and hours earlier three Palestinians were killed. In Jerusalem on Saturday, Israeli police used riot gear to disperse dozens of Palestinians who threw stones and bottles at them.

“Jerusalem is a red line that Muslims and Arabs cannot allow to be crossed,… and what is happening today is an attempt to impose a new reality on the Holy city,” Arab League Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit said in a statement.

“The Israeli government is playing with fire and risking a major crisis with the Arab and Islamic world,” he added.

Arab League foreign ministers will hold emergency talks in Cairo on Wednesday, the group said in a statement. The United Nations (UN) Security Council plans to meet on Monday to discuss the bloodiest spate of Israeli-Palestinian violence for years. Sweden, Egypt and France requested the meeting to urgently discuss de-escalation in Jerusalem. Israeli military commanders have warned violence may escalate.

Meanwhile, Indonesian government has urged to grant worship rights to Muslims in Palestine at the Al Aqsa Mosque following an entry restriction imposed by the Israeli authority.

"We continue to discuss technical matters as part of our concern, so that worship rights can be restored after the Israel authority restricted Muslim people from offering prayers in the Al Aqsa Mosque," Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister, Retno Marsudi noted on Monday.

Indonesia is urging all parties to lower the escalation in Palestine, Marsudi noted.

"I will communicate with the Jordanian government to deliver what we have discussed with the Turkish foreign affairs minister, the US secretary of state, and the OIC secretary general," she added.

Marsudi noted that some countries understood the necessity of handling problems in Palestine. The US government has also agreed on the necessity of a status quo in the Al Aqsa Mosque complex. Palestines independence is one of the values of the Indonesian foreign policy.

"We are standing at the very front to assist the Palestinian effort to achieve independence," Marsudi added.
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