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Palestinian Israeli conflict

Saudi Arabia to host OIC meeting to discuss Israel’s acts of violence

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Saudi Arabia has called for foreign ministers of the world’s largest body of Muslim nations to hold a meeting Sunday. The gathering is to discuss Israeli acts of violence against Palestinians and the Israeli police’s use of force against protesters at al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem.

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The Kingdom will host the virtual summit, gathering ministers of the 57-nation Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) “to discuss the Israeli aggression in the Palestinian territory,” particularly acts of violence in the vicinity of al-Aqsa Mosque, the body said Saturday.

The Saudi-headquartered OIC includes countries Iran, Turkey, Indonesia and a range of Muslim majority nations.

The sanctity of al-Aqsa mosque, one of Islam’s holiest sites, is a sensitive and emotive issue for Muslims around the world. The OIC was formed 51 years ago in response to a Jewish extremist arson attack on the al-Aqsa Mosque in east Jerusalem.

The hilltop on which the mosque stands is also sacred to Jews, who revere it as the Temple Mount because it was the site of the biblical temples. Some Jews and evangelical Christians support building a new Jewish temple on the site, an idea that Muslims find alarming because they fear it would lead to the mosque being partitioned or demolished.

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