Over the past week, Al Aqsa tensions have risen to boiling point once again. After prominent far-right activist Yehuda Glick was shot by a Palestinian in an assassination attempt, Israel responded by temporarily closing the Al Aqsa compound to Muslims. The closure, which hasn’t happened since 1967, sparked outrage and led to mass protests, two car attacks on Israelis, and numerous clashes between Palestinians and Israeli police. Jordan even stepped into the fray and issued a tense warning, with King Abdullah promising to fight “Israeli unilateralism in Jerusalem” in a speech Sunday. Relations reached a tipping point on Wednesday when Jordan’s ambassador to Israel was recalled.
Al Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest site for Muslims and the holiest for the Jewish population, is often the scene of palpable tension and fiery clashes. The site is technically under the control of Jordan’s King Abdullah, yet Israel often ignores their neighbor and acts on their own accord.