The unrest came as the Israeli parliament prepared to debate a motion calling on Israel to “realise its sovereignty over the Temple Mount”.
Moshe Feiglin, a right-wing member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party who tabled the motion, wants restrictions on Jewish visitors to be lifted. They are currently barred from praying or engaging in other religious activities there.
Although no vote was expected, the the Islamic Waqf - the trust that has overseen the site since Israel captured East Jerusalem from Jordan in the 1967 Middle East war - expressed concern and said there had been “Jordanian contacts with Israel to prevent any moves” affecting its status.
The Dome of the Rock Mosque in Jerusalem; this is the Rock that, according to Jewish tradition, is where Abraham was commanded by God to sacrifice his son Isaac:
According to the Talmud, it was close to here, on the site of the altar, that God gathered the earth that was formed into Adam. It was on this rock that Adam—and later Cain, Abel, and Noah—offered sacrifices to God. Jewish sources identify this rock as the place mentioned in the Bible where Abraham fulfilled God’s test to see if he would be willing to sacrifice his son Isaac. The mountain is identified as Moriah in Genesis 22. It is also identified as the rock upon which Jacob dreamt about angels ascending and descending on a ladder and consequently consecrating and offering a sacrifice upon . . .
The Noble Sanctuary, where the Foundation Stone is located, is thought by commentators of the Qur’an to be the place to which the prophet Muhammad traveled in the Night Journey. Although the Koran does not specifically mention Jerusalem in name as the ascension site, labelling the site vaguely as the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the Hadith, the recorded sayings of Mohammad, specify that the site is indeed the Foundation Stone in Jerusalem. According to Islamic belief, angels visited the site 2,000 years before the creation of Adam. It is also thought to be the place where Israfel, the angel of the trumpet, will sound his horn on Resurrection Day.
Beneath the Foundation Stone is a cavern known as the Well of Souls. It is sometimes thought of as the traditional hiding place of the Ark of the Covenant. For this reason, the Dome of the Rock was built over it, and it is the original place Muslims faced while praying (they now face towards Mecca).