European Union and UN Secretary-General condemn terrorist attack in Jerusalem, urge preservation of Temple Mount status quo.
By Elad Benari, Canada – Arutz Sheva,
The European Union on Friday condemned the terrorist attack at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, in which two police officers were murdered.
“The fatal terror attack launched against Israeli police officers at the Temple Mount/Haram-al-Sharif this morning is not only a crime against people on duty, but also a profanation of this holy site,” said a statement by the EU spokesman.
“There can be no justification for such a crime or any act of terror. The EU offers its condolences to the families of the victims of the shootings.”
The statement added that “Jerusalem is a city sacred to three religions. The status quo at the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif must be preserved. The EU calls on all leaders to condemn violence and all acts of terrorism when they occur, and to work towards restoring the dignity and safety of this holy site.”
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned the attack as well, warning it could ignite more violence and calling on all sides to avoid escalation.
“This incident has the potential to ignite further violence. All must act responsibly to avoid escalation,” he said, in a statement quoted by AFP.
The UN chief praised Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu for swiftly condemning the violence and offering assurances that the holy sites in Jerusalem will be respected.
“The sanctity of religious sites should be respected as places for reflection, not violence,” Guterres said.
Footage from Friday’s attack clearly showed that the terrorists took advantage of the sanctity of the Temple Mount and of Israel’s easing of restrictions on worshipers at the Al-Aqsa Mosque to carry out their attack.
The two Druze officers who were murdered in the attack were transferred to the Hadassah Hospital Mount Scopus in critical condition, where they were pronounced dead.