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Jews Turn Out In Record Numbers At Holy Site Recently Besieged By Violence

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Joshua Gill Religion Reporter
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Jews in Israel ascended the holiest site in Judaism on Tuesday in record numbers after violence at the site subsided.

Over 1,000 Jews visited the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on Tuesday in honor of their holy day, Tisha B’av, making it the largest Jewish crowd to ascend the site in recent years according to an Associated Press report. Anger over the handling of the holy site, however, has not subsided despite Israel’s compromise after the Palestinian Day of Rage.

Palestinian protestors clashed violently with Israeli authorities during the “Day of Rage” at the holy site after Israeli authorities installed metal detectors at the entrance to the Al Aqsa mosque. The Day of Rage clashes left 4 Palestinians dead and 190 injured.

Israeli authorities removed the security measures July 25 and the violence, once spurred on by Hamas, subsided. Muslims remained suspicious of pending Israeli security plans for the site.

Asaf Fried, a representative of various activists groups fighting for Jewish rights at the holy site, said Jews were angry over Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s concession to the Jordanian Waqf’s demand that the metal detectors be removed, according to The Jerusalem Post.

“People are very angry, the government’s behavior last week was humiliating and degrading,” Fried told The JPost. “If Moshe Dayan gave the Waqf the keys to the Temple Mount in 1967, then last week Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave over sovereignty over the Temple Mount to the Waqf.” (Related: Palestinians Attack Israeli Police At Jerusalem Holy Site, Hamas Calls For Religious War)

Nine Jewish visitors were removed from the site Tuesday for breaking the visitation rules that stipulate Jews cannot pray or wear religious paraphernalia at the site, according to the AP report.  Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Samri said authorities arrested three Jewish visitors and one Muslim for fighting at the site.

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