JERUSALEM, May 22, 2014 – (WAFA) – Al-Aqsa Foundation for Heritage and Waqf stated Thursday that Israeli authorities have almost completed grid of tunnels underneath Bab al-Mathara, one of the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex gates.
The Foundation added in a press release that Israel has completed digging tunnels and excavations underneath Bab al-Mathara, also known as the Ablution Gate, connecting them with other grid of tunnel running underneath the western wall of the mosque.
The Foundation added that these Israeli excavations, carried out in secrecy under the pretence of archeological excavation with funds made available through the radical settler organization of Ateret Cohanim, uncovered large vaulted halls that would be open soon to the Israeli public.
“All the archeological findings date back to various successive Islamic periods, especially the Mamluk period; however, Israeli occupation authorities claim they date back to the Temple era,” said the Foundation.
The Foundation noted that the grid of tunnels and excavations run underneath the vicinity of the western border of the Al-Aqsa mosque, an area known as Hamam al-‘Ayn, less than 50 meters far from the mosque, and penetrate deep into underneath Bab al-Mathara, located within the mosque.