January 7, 2021
Temple Mount. (Yossi Zamir/Flash 90)
Mahmoud Habbash, an adviser to Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas on religious and Islamic affairs, said on Wednesday that the "settlers' calls" for the demolition of the Dome of the Rock mosque on the Temple Mount pose a serious danger.
The statement came after the PA's official news agency Wafa reported that Jewish organizations that support the construction of a Holy Temple on the Temple Mount have asked the Israeli government to submit a proposal to the Islamic Endowments Department in Jerusalem and the Jordanian government to demolish the Dome of the Rock and to build the Temple in its place.
Habbash said in a statement that the "settlers" who made these calls enjoy broad support from Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.
He added that is forbidden to ignore these calls and that they must be responded to strongly by the Arabs, Muslims and the entire world.
Habbash is known for his inciting statements against Israel. In 2018, he compared Israel's restrictions on access to the Al-Aqsa Mosque to Nazi methods.
In 2017, he blasted the security measures taken by Israel following a terror attack on the Temple Mount, saying they constitute a blatant violation of the conventions and decisions of international institutions regarding the status of Jerusalem and its holy sites.
Also that year, Habbash gave a sermon which was attended by Abbas himself, during which he warned the US against moving its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Doing so, Habbash said at the time, would be a "declaration of war".