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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Group encouraging Arab couples to get married at al-Aqsa mosque

From Al Arabiya:
A Palestinian heritage association launched a project to encourage Arab-Israelis to hold their marriage ceremonies in Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa Mosque as part of its plan to fight perceived Israeli attempts at erasing the identity of its Arab citizens.

“This project aims at ensuring that al-Aqsa is always full of worshippers in order to assert the importance of the mosque and to counter Israeli violations and occupation,” association chairman Hekmat Naamna told AlArabiya.net.

Naamna explained that since marriage is one of the most important events in anyone’s life, holding the ceremony in al-Aqsa would highlight the importance of the mosque and help bring a sense of blessing to one’s life.

“The Aqsa Mosque is a holy place with a special importance in the entire Muslim world and couples will be blessed if they hold their marriage ceremony in it. It is a source of pride for them.”

The association, Naamna added, encourages couples to marry in al-Aqsa through offering a variety of facilities for the bride and groom as well as the invitees.

“For each ceremony, we make available two buses that take the couple and the guests to the mosque, we coordinate with the marriage registrar, and handle photographs and media coverage.”

The association also gives each couple a gift and a trophy and invites public figures to the ceremony.

Ahmed Abul-Houf, from the village of Deir Hanna in Galilee in northern Israel, was one of the first youths to respond to the association’s project and marry in al-Aqsa mosque.

“I wanted my love for al-Aqsa and my solidarity with its cause to turn from words into action,” he told AlArabiya. “I married there to take part in protecting the mosque.”
It's funny; I never saw any Jewish groups that needed to pay for the cost of the many bar mitzvahs at the Kotel. Somehow, people want to do it on their own without being bribed.

This is just more proof that the supposed holiness of the Al Aqsa mosque is derived more from politics than religion. One can be certain that there were few if any, marriage ceremonies there from 1948 to 1967.