Ben-Gvir’s Temple Mount Visit Puts Israel’s Arab Allies in Tight Spot, Avi Melamed Warns

Ben-Gvir’s Temple Mount Visit Puts Israel’s Arab Allies in Tight Spot, Analysts Warn

Find Avi Melamed’s insights and warnings on Ben-Gvir’s Temple Mount visit, as quoted today in THE MEDIA LINE.

Government minister’s quick jaunt around the site holy to both Jews and Muslims provides easy fodder for Israel’s enemies, according to ex-intelligence official

A far-right Israeli government minister’s recent visit to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem could spell the beginning of trouble for Israel’s ties with its new Arab allies in the region, political analysts have cautioned.

Itamar Ben-Gvir, who heads the Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power) party and who was recently appointed minister of National Security, visited the Temple Mount on Tuesday, sparking international condemnation and widespread criticism from other countries, including Abraham Accords signatories such as the United Arab Emirates. The Temple Mount is the holiest site in Judaism and the third holiest place for Muslims, who call it Haram al-Sharif.

Israel’s Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu had been scheduled to visit the UAE next week, but the trip was postponed until February, according to Hebrew media reports. The delay comes on the heels of the Gulf state’s condemnation of Ben-Gvir’s Temple Mount visit, although it is unclear if the two incidents are connected.

The visit plays into the hands of those opposing normalization, and those criticizing Israel’s allies in the region, and provides the perfect distraction for Iran at a time when it is trying to divert world attention from its brutal suppression of domestic protesters

Avi Melamed, a senior Arab affairs adviser and former Israeli intelligence official, told The Media Line that Ben-Gvir’s visit to the Temple Mount is counterproductive to Israel’s strategic and security interests.

“The visit plays into the hands of those opposing normalization, and those criticizing Israel’s allies in the region, and provides the perfect distraction for Iran at a time when it is trying to divert world attention from its brutal suppression of domestic protesters,” asserted Melamed, who founded the Inside the Middle East think tank.

“For the Palestinian Authority, already going through its own power struggle, the trip – seen as a provocation by Israelis against the Muslim control over the Al-Aqsa compound – is inflaming tensions with both moderate and more radical Palestinians who criticize the PA’s strategic choice of diplomacy over armed conflict and what they perceive as a loss of the power to deter Israeli provocations through the threat of violence.”

Melamed added that the visit has many in Israel and abroad questioning Netanyahu’s ability to rein in the more far-right elements within his ruling government coalition.

Find Avi Melamed’s insights and warnings on Ben-Gvir’s Temple Mount visit, as quoted today in THE MEDIA LINE.

The Media Line is a Middle East focused news wire for both government agencies and media outlets around the world. Its website receives 373,585 UVM.

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Avi Melamed
Avi Melamedhttps://insidethemiddle-east.com
Avi Melamed is an expert on current affairs in the Arab & Muslim World and their impact on Israel & the Middle East. A former Israeli Intelligence Official & Senior Official on Arab Affairs, Fluent in Arabic, English, and Hebrew, he has held high-risk Government, Senior Advisory, Intelligence & Counter-Terrorist intelligence positions in Arab cities & communities - often in very sensitive times - on behalf of Israeli Government agencies. He is the Founder & CEO of Inside the Middle East | Intelligence Perspectives - an apolitical non-partisan curriculum using intelligence methodology to examine the Middle East. As an Author, Educator, Expert, and Strategic Intelligence Analyst, Avi provides Intelligence Analysis, Briefings, and Geopolitical Tours to diplomats, Israeli and foreign policymakers, global media outlets, and a wide variety of international businesses, organizations, and private clients on a range of Israel and Middle East Affairs.

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