Ha Ha Bayit

Avi Melamed ~ Inside The Middle East
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The Temple Mt. Compound is known in Hebrew as Har Ha Bayit (The Mountain of the Temple).

Har Ha Bayit is the most sacred place for Jews.

The ancient Jewish Temples were located inside the compound. Both were demolished. The First Temple was destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 BCE. The Second Temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 CE. Part of the western perimeter of the ancient Jewish Temple which is preserved in our times is also known as the Western Wall, known in Hebrew as Ha-Kotel Ha Ma’aravi (The Western Wall).

Since the demolition of the Second Temple, the Western Wall – as the only remaining remnant of the Temple – is the most sacred site for Jews.

Between 1948 and 1967 the Temple Mount Compound was ruled by Jordan.

Since the 1967 War, the Temple Mount Compound has been under Israeli control.

Israel is responsible for security inside the Compound, while an Islamic administrative apparatus known as the Waqf is in charge of the day to day aspects in the Compound – including ceremonies and observances, religious classes, maintenance, tourism, etc.

The Waqf receives its funding from Jordan. Article 9 of the 1994 Israeli-Jordanian Peace Treaty reads: “In accordance with the Washington Declaration, Israel respects the present special role of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in Muslim Holy shrines in Jerusalem. When negotiations on the permanent status will take place, Israel will give high priority to the Jordanian historic role in these shrines.”

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