Haredi MK Gafni asks Netanyahu to bar lawmakers from visiting Temple Mount

United Torah Judaism MK Moshe Gafni chairs a Knesset Finance Committee on May 15, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
United Torah Judaism MK Moshe Gafni chairs a Knesset Finance Committee on May 15, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

United Torah Judaism MK Moshe Gafni urges Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to stop lawmakers from visiting the flashpoint Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem.

Mainstream Haredi Jews, including the Chief Rabbinate, believe that Jews should not ascend to the Temple Mount because the site is holy and modern-day Jews are impure. Gafni says that such trips are not just sacrilege, but also dangerous on both a security and diplomatic level.

“I am appealing and asking you to prevent the ascent to the Temple Mount, both due to the political issue regarding the attitude of the countries of the world in allowing it, and due to the security issue and the incitement that exists as a result,” says Gafni.

Gafni adds that “there is no reason for this, it does not show sovereignty; on the contrary, it constitutes sacrilege in the place most connected to the Jewish people and most sacred to them.”

Earlier today, ministers and lawmakers from the Likud and Otzma Yehudit parties visited the Temple Mount, including Otzma Yehudit’s Negev and Galilee Minister Yitzhak Wasserlauf and MK Yitzhak Kroizer, and Likud MKs Dan Illouz, Amit Halevi and Ariel Kallner.

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