Turkey PM vows to protect Jerusalem and al-Aksa mosque

Davutoğlu accuses Israel of using “internal turmoil” in Islamic world as opportunity, vows to protect Jerusalem; Mosque burned in West Bank, synagogue attacked; Kerry to visit Jordan on Jerusalem and Islamic State jihadists; Netanyahu announces steps against violence, addresses Abbas’s propaganda and international community’s silence amidst growing tension

Al-Aksa mosque, the Dome of the Rock (Reuters)

Al-Aksa mosque, the Dome of the Rock (Reuters)

Turkey’s Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu vowed to “defend attacks on Jerusalem” by the State of Israel. Davutoğlu stated that “Nothing will prevent Turkey from protecting Jerusalem and the al-Aksa mosque” accusing Israel’s leaders of being “brutal”.

Davutoğlu further stated that Turkey will be “the loudest voice against the Israeli soldiers who tarnished the al-Aqsa Mosque” claiming that Israel was taking advantage of “internal turmoil and tension in the Islamic world”.

Israeli security forces have been strengthened in Jerusalem and the West Bank as clashes and riots continue. The Israeli government is also considering calling up border police reservists in light of terror attacks and riots through out the region.

Palestinians have accused Israeli settlers for a fire that broke out in a mosque near Ramallah on Tuesday night. The mosque, located in the village of Al-Maghir in the West Bank has been under heavy violence and riots through out the week. West Bank district police are investigating the fire, stating Wednesday morning that both the IDF and police will enter the village to investigate the incident.

Also on Tuesday night Palestinians through a Molotov cocktail into an ancient synagogue in Shfaram. The synagogue was slightly damaged with no injuries reported.

Palestinian riot in Jerusalem Tuesday night

Palestinian riot in Jerusalem Tuesday night

The US State Department announced Wednesday morning that Secretary of State John Kerry will travel to Amman, Jordan to meet with Jordan’s King Abdullah II ahead of his trip to the United Arab Emirates. His meeting will be focused on tensions in Jerusalem as well as Islamic State jihadists.

Jordan recalled its ambassador from Israel earlier this month, claiming Israel is committing several “violations” at the al-Aksa mosque. Jordan has not made such a diplomatic move since 1994.

Prime Minster Netanyahu will also meet with King Abdullah II and Kerry in Amman.

Prime Minister Netanyahu announced steps that Israel’s Security Cabinet will take amidst growing violence. He stated on Tuesday night that, “These steps include reinforcing forces across the country to increase the security of Israeli civilians, destruction of terrorists’ homes and harsh responses to rioters throwing rocks, Molotov cocktails, and fireworks” adding that parents of Palestinian and Arab children throwing rocks will be fined.

Netanyahu stated that “Terror has no borders… terrorists do not want us in Jerusalem or Tel Aviv, not in Gush Etzion [Judea and Samaria] and not anywhere else.” He vowed to “to operate decisively and responsibly against terror and incitement.”

Netanyahu also addressed Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas’s accusations Tuesday that Israel is instigating a holy war in Jerusalem. He stated on Abbas that “Instead of telling the truth, he is spreading lies as if we are attempting to change the status of holy sites. Instead of educating his people on peace, he is teaching them terror.”

The prime minister called on Israeli Arabs to “not buy into this propaganda” stating that “you are citizens with equal rights and equal duties. It is the duty of every single citizen to operate within the law.”

He additionally criticized the international community for discrimination against the State of Israel and its lack of condemning Abbas’s lies and propaganda. He stated that, “the international community, which condemns every balcony we build here, refuses to speak out against Abu Mazen [Abbas].”

Netanyahu is scheduled to hold a cabinet meeting Wednesday morning.