Two Palestinian Authority officials recently asserted that Islamic law forbids Jews from praying at the Western Wall of the Temple Mount, both adding that the wall was an integral part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
“Allah decreed that the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque is Islamic and belongs to Muslims alone,” Tayseer Al-Tamimi, former Chief Justice of PA Religious Court said on February 17, according to a translation provided by political NGO Palestinian Media Watch.
“It is part of the religious belief of a billion and a half Muslims, and the Jews have no right to it… Or the right to pray in any part of it. The Al-Aqsa Mosque includes all its courtyards… and specifically, its western wall.”
Last month, Palestinian Authority Minister of Religious Affairs Mahmoud Al-Habbash stated that he believes non-Muslims should be barred from praying at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, which, according to him, includes the Western Wall as well.
“The Al-Aqsa Mosque will remain, by divine decree, a Muslim mosque, will not be shared with anyone, will not be forfeited, and no one besides Muslims will pray in it,” he said.
In an interview with the official PA television station in December last year, Al-Habbash stated that the Western Wall is “an authentic part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque only.”