Continuing an ongoing crusade to destroy all Jewish sovereignty on the Temple Mount, the Jordanian Waqf has begun an illegal construction project on the Mount, leading to an order from the Israeli government to immediately halt the work.
Acting under concerns that the illegal construction is damaging to valuable ancient artifacts and structures found in the area, once home to the Jewish Temples of Biblical times, the Jerusalem Municipality issued the order on Tuesday.
The order would interrupt the unauthorized building of additional restrooms at the Temple Mount complex, a project which the Islamic Waqf, the Jordanian authority on the Mount, has undertaken without proper permits.
The illegal construction could cause sewage to seep into archaeological sites below the Mount, said the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), which filed a lawsuit against the Waqf last week. Possible endangered areas include the Antonia Fortress, located above the Western Wall tunnels and estimated to date from at least 31 BCE.
Additional restrooms were needed to accommodate the influx of Muslim visitors expected during the upcoming month of Ramadan, according to the Waqf. It started the unauthorized construction despite the fact that Jerusalem’s municipality had agreed to install portable toilets in the area for the holiday.
The Waqf has an additional plan to break through one of the walls on the Temple Mount itself, which the IAA also opposed, the Times of Israel reported.
While Muslims claim the al-Aqsa Mosque, situated on the Temple Mount, as one of the holiest sites in Islam, the Temple Mount was largely neglected under Jordanian rule. It has become a flashpoint for violence in recent years, with Arabs accusing Jews of attempting to “appropriate” a place which has been holy to the Jewish people for 2,000 years.
Previous Waqf construction at the site of the Temple Mount has raised serious concerns among archaeology experts, who strongly condemn the Waqf’s careless excavation and use of heavy machinery, such as bulldozers and tractors.
The ongoing issue has united archaeologists and scholars from all sides of the political spectrum. Top Israeli archaeologist Eilat Mazar has said the Waqf’s use of “heavy machinery and little documentation” could “damage ancient relics and erase evidence of the presence of the Biblical structures.”
As Arab and Palestinian leaders have made their agenda of severing all Jewish connection to the Temple Mount quite clear, the fact that the Waqf is unconcerned with erasing evidence of Biblical structures proving the Jewish nature of the Temple Mount is somewhat unsurprising.
Indeed, unsatisfied with merely physically and verbally attacking Jews who attempt to visit the site or destroying archeological evidence, opponents of Israel have managed to introduce a UNESCO resolution declaring the Temple Mount a “Muslim” site.