claims Israel destroying Al-Aksa Mosque
Reference: 6 Sep 2001 Jerusalem Post
Israel is constructing two tunnels in
a bid to cause Jerusalem's Al-Aksa Mosque to collapse, the Iranian
state news agency claimed this morning.
The agency's Gaza office filed the following dispatch:
Esam Awad, sitting engineer of the al-Aqsa Mosque building
committee, has recently discovered that the Israeli authorities have
been constructing two new tunnels under the Marwani Mosque in the
The disclosure came at a time when the Palestinian Higher Islamic
Commission, the Endowments Department, and the Constitutional
Council have cautioned Muslims against the Israeli plan to destroy
the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Southern Wall.
Sheikh Ikrima Sabri, chairman of the commission and the grand mufti
of Jerusalem, said in statement that the Israeli government and
information media had created a big hue and cry to justify the
Jewish state's interference in the affairs of Al-Aqsa Mosque.
He emphasized that Al-Aqsa Mosque is a sacred place "only for
the Muslims, around the globe".
The committee for the building of Al-Aqsa started maintenance work
on the Southern Wall about four months ago, Sabri said.
"However", he pointed out that "the Israeli
authorities were hampering the work, by preventing supply of
building materials to the mosque's compound."
Sheikh Ikrima rejected the Israeli claims that it was the
maintenance work that created a crack on the Southern Wall. The
Islamic Endowments Department carries out the renovation work to
protect the Al-Aqsa and not to cause any damage to the Southern
He also disclosed that the crack was created about 500 years ago
when a powerful earthquake hit Jerusalem city.
"We Muslims will do the needful for the maintenance and
renovation of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and its facilities as they belong
to us only," the engineer emphasized.
"The Haram of Al-Aqsa", he pointed out, "covers an
area of 133 donums (about 119,700 square meters), including the
outer walls, the Burak Wall, the Marwani Mosque, the Dome of the
Rock Mosque and the old Al-Aqsa.
There will be no surrender or bargain or negotiation even on the
smallest portion of the Al-Aqsa Mosque or Jerusalem and Palestine,