USA working to solve Al-Aqsa crisis: Fatah official

The Wailing Wall is a gathering spot in Old Jerusalem ITaylor

The Wakf's decision to order preachers and imams not to deliver sermons in Jerusalem's mosques on Friday comes after Israel installed metal detectors on Sunday in front of the entrances to the Temple Mount.

The two Israeli security guards and the three Arab Israelis died in the attack.

One man was lightly wounded in the Saturday shooting, the Israeli military said. Since the measures were put in place, worshippers have refused to enter the Mount and have instead held prayers outside the Lions' Gate which leads to Al-Aqsa.

Ekrima Sabri, former mufti of Jerusalem and the head of the Supreme Islamic Council, told Arab News that what is taking place in Jerusalem is a form of nonviolent civil disobedience.

Fatah is calling for Friday prayers to be conducted in public squares in Palestinian cities to denounce what they described as "terrorist procedures" by Israel in occupied East Jerusalem.

Omar Kiswani, director of al-Aqsa Mosque, told reporters outside the site that "the closure, the occupation, and the prevention of the call for prayers are all unfair and unjust and constitute a violation of the United Nations resolutions and the worldwide agreements".

A call to prayer rang out from Al-Aqsa, but Muslim worshipers held midday prayers outside the site in protest at the new security measures.

Fridays in Jerusalem are often a time of heightened security as it's the holy day of the week for Muslims and Shabbat for Jews begins at sundown.

Muslims had been praying outside the mosque, Islam's third holiest site, to protest Israeli restrictions on the compound, including metal detectors.

Tensions have increased around al-Aqsa since three Palestinian-Israeli gunmen fatally shot two Israeli policemen outside the complex on Friday in one of the most serious attacks in the area in years.

They called on the faithful "not to enter the mosque through" the detectors.

The Israeli police relaxed its open-fire regulations in December 2015, permitting officers to open fire with live ammunition on those throwing stones or firebombs as an initial option, without having to use non-lethal weapons first. Proposals to change security measures at the compound have sparked controversy in the past.

Muslim worshipers have heeded the Wakf's calls not to enter the Temple Mount through the metal detectors and prayed for the fourth consecutive day on Wednesday adjacent to the site in protest.

Mahmoud Al-Habbash, president of the Palestinian Authority's (PA) judicial system and an advisor to PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas on religious affairs, signaled that the Jewish State's "crimes" would contribute to the deterioration of peace and security.

Israeli authorities are "inflating this situation", he said.

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