by Khaled Abu Toameh
Only days after it was removed from the Palestinian Authority’s Ministry of Information website, a “study” denying Jews’ rights to the Western Wall has resurfaced, this time on the official website of the PA’s news agency, Wafa.
By publishing the document on Wafa’s website, the official mouthpiece of the PLO and the PA, the authority has sent a message that its has officially endorsed its findings.
The “study,” which had sparked strong condemnations from Israel and the US, was written by Al-Mutawakel Taha, a senior official with the Ministry of Information in Ramallah. The five-page document claims that the Western Wall, which it refers to as the Al-Buraq Wall, is an integral part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and has always belonged to Muslims. It states that Muslim “tolerance” had allowed Jews to stand in front of it and cry over its destruction. “This wall was never part of the socalled Temple Mount,” Taha wrote in his project. “The wall is the property of Muslims and there never was a stone in it that dated back to the era of King Solomon. Jewish faith has no connection to this wall.” The document accused “Zionist occupation of falsely and unrightfully” claiming ownership of the Western Wall. The “study” disappeared from the Ministry of Information’s website almost immediately after the US condemned it strongly. Initially, the ministry claimed that hackers had penetrated its website and removed the Western Wall report. However, a senior PA official in Ramallah later admitted that the “study” had been removed under pressure from the US Administration.
Khaled Abu Toameh
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