Mar. 1, 2019
After a weekend of unrest at the Temple Mount and the arrest and subsequent release of two waqf officials, an anonymous Palestinian source has indicated that the recent escalation of violence in Jerusalem is connected to the addition of seven new members to the waqf who are affiliated with the Palestinian Authority and not the Jordanian government. The new members were added after Jordan announced that it no longer wants to have exclusive control over the waqf. While Jordan attributes this to a desire for Muslim unity, the source claims that foreign governments are trying to buy their way into Jerusalem and that Jordan is violating the status quo by letting the PA come into the picture.
Among the new members of the waqf are top PA and Palestine Liberation Organization officials Hatem Abdul Qader (a former member of the Palestinian Legislative Council) and Adnan al-Husayni (a member of the PLO Executive Committee, PA minister for Jerusalem affairs and former governor of Jerusalem). Jerusalem Grand Mufti Muhammad Ahmad Hussein and Al Quds University President Dr. Imad Abu Kishek, both of whom were appointed to their positions by PA President Mahmoud Abbas, are also now members of the waqf. In addition, Sheikh Ekrima Sabri, whose opinions are known to be extreme and who is linked to the Turkish government, was made a member of the waqf by the Jordanian government.