Israel and the Palestinian Authority reconfirmed to WND that there are no plans in the works for President Obama to visit the Temple Mount amid continued threats from Hamas over rumors.
The rumors reached a crescendo with Hamas reportedly threatening at a protest march Friday to start an intifada, or uprising, if the U.S. president visits the holy site.
Last week, Hamas’s senior leader in the Gaza Strip, Mahmoud al-Zahar, warned in a U.S. radio interview that any Obama visit to the Temple Mount “will actually touch the deep and the tender part of the Palestinian, Arabic and Islamic countries all over the world.”
Zahar, speaking on WABC’s “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio,” apparently was alluding to previous Palestinian and Arab rioting instigated after then-Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s visit to the Temple Mount in 2000.
Last month, Hamas issued a statement warning Obama against the idea of ascending the Temple Mount, calling such a visit “a diplomatic catastrophe.”
The statement further called Obama’s rumored visit to the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Mount “an imminent danger which the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Jerusalem have never faced.”
Contacted by WND, neither Israel nor the Palestinian Authority said it had any information Obama plans to visit the Temple Mount amid Palestinian rumors that such a trip is in the works.
The White House also confirmed a Temple Mount visit is not being planned.
The office of Adnan Ghaleb al-Husayni, the governor of the Waqf, or Islamic custodians of the mount, also said that no presidential visit to the sensitive site was requested.
An official in Husayni’s office previously said the idea of an Obama ascent to the Temple Mount is “insane.”