Jordan’s parliament on Wednesday voted unanimously to eject Israeli Ambassador Daniel Nevo over this week’s arrest of Jerusalem Mufti Sheikh Muhammed Hussein. Jordan technically exercises religious control over the Temple Mount, though Palestinian Authority-appointed officials have been effectively been running the show for over a decade.
Jordanian Interior Minister Hussein Mahalia summoned Nevo to express his country’s severe condemnation of the mufti’s detention.
Israel arrested the mufti on Tuesday for his role in inciting violence against Israeli police stationed at the holy site. The police officers were attacked because they had tried to quiet a Muslim youth who was loudly hurling insults at Jewish visitors.
Israeli President Shimon Peres sent a message to Jordan stressing Israel’s commitment to the peace treaty between the two nations and to freedom of religion in Jerusalem.
The Jordanian outburst over what amounted to Israel slapping the mufti on the wrist is par for the course. At the same time, these self-declared defenders of religious freedom think it perfectly acceptable to deny Jews and Christians the right to pray at the Temple Mount, the most holy site in the world for Jews and many Christians.