The European Union (EU) is exerting efforts to defuse the Israeli-Palestinian tension over the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East Jerusalem, and enable worshippers to perform religious rituals without any obstacles, a EU official said on Thursday.
Shadi Othman, a communication officer at the EU mission in Jerusalem, told the “Voice of Palestine” that the EU follows up on what is happening in Jerusalem through all diplomatic and political channels and its member states.
“The EU’s efforts aim to return to calm and enable the worshipers to perform their religious rituals in the month of Ramadan without any obstacles,” he said.
Othman added that the EU communicates with all parties represented by Israel, the Palestinian Authority, and Jordan to reduce tension and restore calm.
He noted that the EU calls for respect for the Jordanian role and the Hashemite kingdom’s guardianship in Jerusalem.
“There is an escalating danger, and what is required at this stage is for all parties to work to calm the situation and prevent things from slipping into areas that we do not want to reach,” Othman said.
He added that “there is a need to respect the arrangements that have been in place for years for prayer inside Al-Aqsa Mosque, adding that he hopes that the situation on the ground in Al-Aqsa Mosque will return to calm in the coming days.
For the past two days, the Al-Aqsa Mosque has witnessed violent clashes between Palestinian worshipers and the Israeli police, who forcibly took them out of the mosque.