Israeli forces arrest nine Palestinians, settlers storm Al-Aqsa under police protection
Israeli forces arrested at least nine Palestinians in several areas of the West Bank and Jerusalem early on Sunday, while in East Jerusalem Israeli settlers stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, the Palestinian WAFA news agency reported.
Three Palestinian youths, named as Ahmad Nawaf Salaymeh, Mohammad Khalil Salaymeh, and Mutaz Salaymeh, were detained in Jerusalem. They had already been under house arrest for nearly two months, according to the PA news agency.
Israeli forces in Jerusalem also placed Areen Zaneen under house arrest for a week and have barred him from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque for 20 days.
Raids and arrests also took place in the towns and villages of Yatta, Deir Samt, Qarawat Bani Hassan and Hares in the West Bank.
Also on Sunday morning, extremist Jewish settlers stormed the Al-Aqsa courtyard under heavy Israeli police escort.
Witnesses cited by WAFA said that the settlers entered from the Moroccan Gate and performed Jewish rituals, in violation of a longstanding status-quo arrangement governing the Al-Aqsa compound which reserves prayer at the site for Muslims.
Many radical Israelis seek to either split the Al-Aqsa compound in terms of time and space available between Jews and Muslims or demolish the mosque and replace it with a Jewish temple
Al-Aqsa is considered Islam's third holiest site and the most holy Muslim religious site in Palestine.
Israeli settlers have regularly raided the site for close to two decades, inflaming tensions with the Palestinians.