The Ma’arat HaMachpela (Tomb of the Patriarchs) in Hebron will be closed to Jews over the next 4 Fridays, due to the Muslim celebration of Ramadan that began today.

Jewish prayers on Friday and on Friday night will instead be held on the seventh step. Before Israel retook control of the Tomb, the Muslims forbade Jews to go up to the building beyond the seventh step.

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On Shabbat day, Ma’arat HaMachpelah will be open to Jewish access as normal.

We remind our readers to be careful when walking near or in the Old City of Jerusalem, as Ramadan has become a time when Arab attacks on Jews have traditionally increased in that part of the city.

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