Jerusalem's city council ordered the closure of the access ramp saying it poses a hazard
The Mughrabi ramp leading from the plaza by the Western Wall to the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the old city of Jerusalem. Jordan, the custodian of Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem, warned Israel against closing a wooden access ramp to the sensitive Al-Aqsa mosque compound in the Old City. © Gali Tibbon - AFP
Jerusalem's city council ordered the closure of the access ramp saying it poses a hazard
AFP
Last updated: December 9, 2011

Jordan warns Israel over Al-Aqsa ramp closure

Jordan, the custodian of Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem, warned Israel on Friday against closing a wooden access ramp to the sensitive Al-Aqsa mosque compound in the Old City.

"Jordan rejects any Israeli attempt to affect Jerusalem's holy sites, identity and heritage, including Al-Mughrabi Gate" that leads to the compound's Al-Buraq Wall, known to Jews as the Western Wall, Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh said.

The kingdom, which signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1994, "is in daily contact with the Israeli side to make sure it does not change the status quo of the gate," Judeh told the government-owned Al-Rai Arabic daily.

Jerusalem's city council on Thursday ordered the closure of the access ramp, saying it poses both a fire hazard and is at risk of collapse.

But Muslim leaders fear work on it could have a destabilising effect, accusing Israel of failing to coordinate renovation plans with the Waqf, the Islamic organisation that has jurisdiction over Muslim parts of the site.

Jordan's powerful Islamists have condemned the city council's decision.

"Israel is disregarding all Arab and international warnings," said Hamzeh Mansur, head of the opposition Islamic Action Front party, accusing Israel of pursuing a "policy of Judaising the Holy Land."

Last month, Amman warned that any Israeli "threats and aggressions" against the holy site would lead to "endless" violence in the Middle East.

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