Photo Credit: Shalev Shalom/TPS
Ancient archaeological artifacts used by Arabs to block the path of Jews on the Temple Mount. April 18, 2022

Israel’s charge d’affaires to Amman was summoned for a rebuke on Monday by Jordan’s Foreign Minister, Ayman Safadi, over the so-called “attacks” and “violations of the status quo” on the Temple Mount.

The Israeli diplomat was tasked with delivering a letter of protest to the Jerusalem government in which Jordan emphasized the “need to respect the rights of worshipers to perform their religious worship freely and without restrictions,” the Hebrew-language Ynet site reported.

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The letter protested the “illegal and provocative Israeli violations in the Al Aqsa Mosque,” and stated it was a “dangerous escalation and a violation, worthy of condemnation, of international law and of Israel’s obligations by virtue of being the occupying power.”

Israelis Stuck as Jordan Closes Border
As the Israeli diplomat was facing “the music” at Jordan’s Foreign Ministry, Amman summarily closed its border with Israel without warning Monday, trapping at least 200 Israeli tourist on the Jordanian side of the border.

In response to questions by reporters, Jordan claimed the closure was due to “extremely heavy traffic” at the border.

At the same time, the Lower House of the Jordanian Parliament called for the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador as a “protest” of the so-called “Israeli attacks in Jerusalem.”

Jordan’s PM, Lawmakers Praise Arab Attackers
Jordanian lawmakers approved a memo to the government signed by 87 lawmakers calling on the government to expel Israel’s ambassador, the official Jordanian Petra News Agency reported.

Jordan’s Prime Minister Bisher Al-Khasawneh praised the Arab violence against Israelis in the same parliamentary session.

“I congratulate all Palestinians and all Jordanian Islamic Waqf workers who stand as tall as a turret and those who throw stones at pro-Zionists who defile the al-Aqsa Mosque in the security of the Israeli occupation government,” Khasawneh said.

Muted Response from Israeli Government
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett issued a muted response to the provocations: “We expect everyone not to join in the lies and certainly not to encourage violence against Jews,” he said in a brief statement.

“Israel is doing everything so that everyone, as always, can celebrate the holidays safely.”

Israel’s Foreign Minister Yair Lapid convened a hearing Monday to determine a response to the Jordanian actions.

Israel’s prime minister, foreign minister and Defense Minister Benny Gantz have all made respectful, friendly visits to Amman in recent weeks in an effort to prevent precisely the scenario now taking place.

Jordan, Palestinian Authority Continue Incitement Against Israel
The Jordanian government, in cooperation with the Palestinian Authority government in Ramallah, has been working hard during this year’s Islamic holy month of Ramadan to encourage Arab violence against Israelis on the Temple Mount and elsewhere in Jerusalem.

Arabs on the Temple Mount have rioted daily after their prayers and screamed “Allahu Akbar” with calls for the murder of Jews and “We’ll Avenge You, O Aqsa, in spirit and blood!” while Jews visit the site, one of the holiest in the Jewish faith.

Already on Sunday, King Abdullah II was calling on Israel to “cease all illegal and provocative measures” that he said “violate” the “historical and legal status quo” on the Temple Mount, which he said could “push towards further escalation.”

The Hashemite monarch directed his government to “continue its regional and international efforts and communications to stop Israeli escalations.” The king also directed his government to “lobby for an active international position that exerts pressure on Israel,” according to a Royal Court statement reported by The Jordan Times.

Annual Lies, Anti-Israel Hate Alive and Well
The Lower House Speaker of Jordan’s Parliament Abdulkarim Dughmi likewise repeated the provocation on Monday that “the Al Aqsa Mosque has been facing recurrent attacks from the Jewish extremists and the occupation authorities that seek to instill the spatial and temporal division of Al Haram Al Sharif.”

At the beginning of a Lower Chamber session, Dughmi called for stopping “all illegitimate and provocative procedures by Israel that violate this status quo and push for more tensions,” according to Petra.

The above mantras – accusing Israelis of “attacking” the Al Aqsa Mosque and calling for the “defense of Jerusalem” — are chanted annually during Ramdan by those deliberately seeking to ignite a war against Israel.

The Reality
To clarify the reality: Israeli Border Guard Police were forced to accompany Jews through the Old City of Jerusalem after a group of men walking to the Western Wall for prayers was attacked by a gang of Arab thugs.

Over a two-hour period on the second day of Pesach, Arab attackers hurled huge rocks at around 10 Egged buses bringing Jewish worshipers to the Western Wall.

Seven people, wounded by rocks and shattered glass, were taken to Jerusalem’s Sha’are Zedek Medical Center for treatment. Passengers noted that Israeli police were “missing in action,” nowhere to be seen.

Despite the clear threats and provocations, thousands of Jews have made their way to the Western Wall this holiday and hundreds ascend the Temple Mount each morning.

Those Jews willing to brave the screaming and rock-throwing Arabs in and around the Temple Mount compound have been hurried along an abbreviated path by Israel’s Border Guard Police who were clearly intent on minimizing the “insult” presented by the offending Jews, as well as making sure everyone got out of there in one piece.

A tour that normally would have taken up to an hour was rushed through within a 20-30-minute period for each group of Jews during the three-hour period the site was open to non-Muslims.

Regardless, more than 700 Jews ascended to the site on Sunday, and more than 600 visited Monday.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.