Jerusalem mosque set alight in suspected ‘price tag’ attack
Arsonists set fire to a deserted mosque in central Jerusalem during the night between Tuesday and Wednesday. There was no structural damage reported and the damage mainly consisted of the blackening of walls and graffiti reading “Price Tag,” and anti-Islamic phrases.
The Nebi Akasha mosque, apparently built under the Ayyubid dynasty in the 12th century with additions made under the Mamluk dynasty in the 13th century. It is believed that the mosque was founded on the burial site of combatants in Saladin’s army, though an ancient tradition designates the site as the place where Akasha, a friend of the Prophet Muhammad, was buried.
The mosque is uniquely located in central Jerusalem in the midst of a Ultra-Orthodox neighborhood. It was abandoned in the Israeli War of Independence. Its was recently renovated and turned into a municipal storage facility.
Graffiti spray painted on the historical site included inscriptions such as “Muhammad is Dead,” “Muhammad is a Pig,” and “Price Tag.”
The Jerusalem municipality closed off the entrance to the mosque, and the police and Shin Bet began an investigation.
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat denounced the act adding that adding zero tolerance should be shown to violence of any kind, and that coexistence in the city must be kept at all costs.