Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu joined in the chorus of condemnation, calling on "the whole world to react to Israel's brazen attacks on our sacred lands" in response to the decision to close off the Temple Mount, and added that the US was supporting Jerusalem's "increasing aggression". Two Palestinian minors were arrested and police were seen shoving and wrestling several people to the ground.
The 16-year Israeli closure order against Bab al-Rahma expired in August and the Waqf, the Islamic endowment body tasked with managing the Temple Mount compound, has argued in favor of reopening the building claiming the Islamic heritage association that had been operating there had always been disbanded and its members arrested.
Tensions in the holy compound in Jerusalem have risen in recent weeks after the site's Muslim administrators reopened a mosque sealed by Israel during a Palestinian uprising in 2003.
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Israeli security forces in Jerusalem's Old City.
His office said he was in communication with relevant parties, including Jordan, "to pressure the occupation's government to halt this risky escalation", and called on the global community to urgently intervene. "Police will respond with strength and determination to any act of violence or attempt to harm Israeli sovereignty on the Temple Mount".
"The Ramallah government subsequently issued a separate statement via the official WAFA news agency saying police prevented a call for prayer from the Al Aqsa Mosque, and "attacked Palestinians who gathered" outside one of the main gates of the Temple Mount compound, ostensibly to perform the evening prayer".
Mustafa Barghouthi, leader of the Palestinian National Initiative movement, also condemned the Israeli attacks on the Palestinian worshippers.
There were also unverified reports of Israeli police entering the Dome of the Rock. This disagreement has reportedly stood in the way of a deal. The actual Gate of Mercy, which is a fortified gateway in the retaining wall surrounding the Temple Mount, has been bricked up for almost 500 years.
Haaretz reports that Israeli officials are working with Jordan to calm tensions.
Palestinian demonstrators break open the locked entrance to the Gate of Mercy compound outside the Al Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem's Old City, February 18, 2019.
Worshippers later prayed outside the locked gates of the site in protest.