Türkiye's president says it is impossible for his country to remain silent in the face of provocations and threats to the status quo and spirituality of Jerusalem’s Al Aqsa Mosque.
In a phone call on Saturday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Israeli counterpart Isaac Herzog discussed the latest raids by Israeli security forces on the Al Aqsa Mosque, as well as the harsh interventions against those at the holy sites, according to Turkish Communications Directorate.
Erdogan stressed that the latest incidents wound the conscience of not only Muslims but all of humanity.
The tensions spreading to the Gaza Strip and Lebanon should not be allowed to escalate, he urged.
President Erdogan underscored that radical Jewish groups’ call for raids on Al-Aqsa Mosque are stoking reactions and concerns.
Stressing the need to prevent such incidents, which are repeated every Ramadan, from becoming the fate of the region, Erdogan also voiced Türkiye's readiness to do its part to get to the root of the problem and take steps towards establishing a just and lasting peace.
Tension escalated across Palestinian territories after Israeli forces stormed the Al Aqsa Mosque complex in East Jerusalem and forcibly removed worshippers on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The Israeli raids on the mosque triggered rocket fire from the Gaza Strip and Lebanon, with Israeli retaliating with airstrikes.
Palestinians accuse Israel of systematically working to Judaize East Jerusalem, where Al-Aqsa is located, and obliterate its Arab and Islamic identity.
For Muslims, Al Aqsa represents the world's third-holiest site. Jews, for their part, call the area the Temple Mount, saying it was the site of two ancient Jewish temples.
Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It annexed the entire city in 1980, in a move never recognized by the international community.