The Jordanian government on Wednesday warned that Israeli unilateral actions in East Jerusalem would undermine the peace treaty between Amman and Tel Aviv. In a statement, Minister of State for Media Affairs and Communications Mohammad Momani cautioned that Israeli violations of Al Aqsa Mosque put the peace treaty between Jordan and Israel on the line, along with efforts of the international community to push forward peace negotiations between the Palestinians and the Israelis.
Momani, who is acting minister of foreign affairs, also denounced Israeli acts that infringe Jordanian sovereignty over the holy sites, calling on the Israeli government, as the occupation authority, to stop all acts of aggression against the holy sites.
The minister, who is also the government spokesperson, said the Hashemite custodianship of the holy sites in Jerusalem is not an Israeli grant, but a historic responsibility of the Hashemites highlighted in the peace treaty between Jordan and Israel, and in accordance with the agreement signed between King Abdullah and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in March last year.
Meanwhile, the official position was echoed by Jordan’s Ambassador to Egypt and Permanent Envoy at the Arab League Bisher Khasawneh, who delivered Jordan’s address at an extraordinary session of the pan-Arab organisation in Cairo on Wednesday to discuss Israeli practices in Jerusalem. Jordan’s stand received support from other Arab representatives, according to the Jordan News Agency.The reason for Jordan's warnings was that the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, on Tuesday held a debate about sovereignty over the contested Jerusalem holy site known as the Temple Mount to Jews and Haram al-Sharif to Muslims. The site, which marks the spot where Islam says the prophet Mohammed ascended to heaven and Judaism says the holiest part of the two ancient temples stood, has been managed by a Muslim religious trust, the Waqf, for centuries. Jewish prayer is currently forbidden there, but is allowed at the Western Wall plaza below the compound.
The Knesset discussion was initiated by far-right Likud MK Moshe Feiglin, who since winning his Knesset seat last year has waged a fierce public battle to allow Jews to pray at Judaism's holiest site, which is also Islam's third-holiest.No vote was taken over Feiglin's proposals.