Hamas and Palestinian flags raised on Temple Mount

“Sword in front of sword, we are the men of Mohammed Deif,” one flag read, in reference to Hamas’ chief military commander.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

Hamas supporters raised the terror group’s flag, along with Palestinian flags, on the Temple Mount Tuesday morning, in a demonstration of the Gaza-based organization’s growing influence in east Jerusalem.

As Muslim worshippers filled the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound for the Eid al-Adha holiday, tens of young men affiliated with Hamas’ Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades hoisted flags with messages and imagery associated with Islamic extremism.

“Sword in front of sword, we are the men of Mohammed Deif,” one flag read, in reference to Hamas’ chief military commander.

“The sword of Jerusalem will release the prisoners and dispel the confusion,” read another message on a flag.

Other flags included images of masked men in military uniforms holding M-16s, in front of a map of modern-day Israel which was depicted as Palestine.

On Sunday, some 1,600 Jews ascended to the Temple Mount during the Tisha B’Av fast, sparking outrage among neighboring Muslim countries, including Jordan, and the Islamist Ra’am party.

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said that he would protect the freedom of both Muslims and Jews to worship in the Temple Mount compound, but later walked back his statements and suggested that Israel would respect the status quo, which grants the right to prayer on the Mount strictly to Muslims.

The raising of the Hamas flags on the Temple Mount comes after a top US government official warned Israelis that the Palestinian Authority is near collapse.

In May 2021, Tzemach told World Israel News that Hamas operatives were using an eastern Jerusalem mosque as an operational center.

He said he believed that the declining popularity of long-serving PA President Abbas had led to an uptick in Hamas activity as a form of electioneering.

“The real PA elections in Jerusalem are happening in the street, and so far the winner is Hamas,” Tzemach told WIN in May.

“Hamas chief Mohammed Deif publicly took responsibility for Jerusalem and said that if [Israel doesn’t withdraw from Temple Mount], we’ll go to war against Israel, and that’s exactly what happened.

“From that moment, it proved that Fatah [the PA] just threatens but doesn’t actually do anything. The real ‘defender of Jerusalem’ is Hamas. When it comes to Sheikh Jarrah and al-Aqsa Mosque, Hamas was the only terror group that actually responded.

“Fatah activists don’t dare enter the Temple Mount, because it’s Hamas territory. As we saw in a viral video, Fatah members who tried to enter were beaten up and thrown out of the compound,” Tzemach said.