Monday, November 28, 2011

Western Wall Bridge Destruction Delayed

After the city engineer of Jerusalem demanded that the Mughrabi bridge be repaired or closed for safety reasons, Israel’s prime minister has ordered that the reconstruction of only non-Muslim access to the Temple Mount be postponed because of Muslim opposition. From the Jerusalem Post:

According to the report, work on the bridge - which received approval in March - was to have begun early Sunday morning.  The initial work of demolishing the existing structure would have necessitated the deployment of large IDF and security forces in Jerusalem and around the Temple Mount, as well as stepped up army preparedness in the West Bank.

Channel 2 reported that Cairo and Amman warned Jerusalem that the work would likely lead to "disruptions" in both Jordan and Egypt.  
Officials in both the Prime Minister's Office and the Jerusalem Municipality refused Sunday night to relate to the reports.
Previous work on the bridge caused widespread rioting in neighborhoods throughout the Jerusalem area and in Jordan.


Under the plans, a permanent bridge is to be built to replace the current temporary wooden structure that has been in use since a 2003 earthquake and winter storm caused part of the original bridge to collapse. The bridge is used as the main entry point for non- Muslim tourists and security forces entering the Temple Mount.

The full story is here. Haaretz has additional details. For background, see this post from one month ago.

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