RAMALLAH - The Palestinian Authority's chief Islamic judge, Sheikh Taysee Rajab Tamimi, said no historical evidence exists proving Jewish claims to Jerusalem or that a Jewish temple ever existed.
Tamimi called Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's statement in London earlier this week that Jews have been building in Jerusalem for 3,000 years "baseless and untrue."
"Jerusalem is an Arab and Islamic city and it always has been so," he said. "[Archaeologists have] "failed to prove that Jews had a history or presence in Jerusalem or that their ostensible temple had ever existed," he said.
The sheikh called Netanyahu and "all Jewish rabbis and extremist organizations" liars for claiming that Jerusalem is a Jewish and said Israel is trying to erase the "Arab and Islamic character of Jerusalem" by "ethnic cleansing."
"By desecrating its holy sites, expelling its Arab residents and demolishing their homes and confiscating their lands and building settlements in Jerusalem, Israel is seeking, through the use of weapons, to turn it into a Jewish city," the sheikh said.
"This is a flagrant violation of all religious, legal, moral and human values," he said.
In a related matter, Hamas and Islamic Jihad rejected Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad's announcement to declare a de facto Palestinian state within two years.
The only path to Palestinian independence is to continue "armed resistance" (a euphemism for terrorism), which Islam justifies as the only realistic way to reclaim "Palestine" from the "Zionist occupiers."
Source: The Jerusalem Post