Hundreds attended a demonstration protesting anti-Jewish discrimination on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem Tuesday afternoon.
Despite being Judaism's holiest site, Jews are forbidden from praying on the Temple Mount due to Muslim pressure and threats of violence, and religious Jews who wish to visit are subjected to a long list of restrictions. Those suspected of breaking the conditions can face arrest or even a ban from the holy site.
Among those in attendance was leading Temple Mount rights activist Rabbi Yehuda Glick, who is still recovering from an attempt on his life by an Islamist terrorist late last year which saw him shot four times at point-blank range.
Speaking to Arutz Sheva, Glick decried what he called anti-Jewish "apartheid" on the Temple Mount.
Glick said the issue was simply one of human rights. "We are human beings," he said.
"We're Jewish, and we want to pray on the Temple Mount, and we want to visit the Temple Mount without being vicitms of terror, or hate, or harassment," he continued, referring to the Muslim mobs who regularly harass Jewish visitors to the Temple Mount.
"(The) Temple Mount should be a symbol of world religious tolerance. We are here today to call upon the government to respect the human rights of every single person on he Temple Mount – including Jews!"
Despite its peaceful nature, the rally almost never went ahead due to attempts by police to ban it.
But Temple Mount rights groups successfully appealed directly to the Israeli High Court, which ruled that police could not prevent protesters from expressing themselves on the issue.
With that, the court conceded that the protest could cause friction with Arabs – and thus restricted the time, as well as the location of the event. Originally, the protest had been set to take place outside the “Mercy Gate,” which had been traditionally been used by Jews to enter the site, but was closed off by the Muslim Waqf, which controls the Mount. The court authorized the protest only at the entrance to the Dung Gate, which is generally used by Jews to enter the area of the Kotel.
The protest was also limited to 75 minutes, during a period when Muslims are generally not at prayer.