- Where is Palestine?
Palestine is a beautiful country in the Middle East with valleys, mountains, and rivers. It has trees on which the world’s most yummy dates, olives, and oranges are grown.
- What and where is Masjid Al-Aqsa?
Masjid Al-Aqsa is mentioned in the Quran as a blessed site for all Muslims around the world. It is the second most sacred site on Earth after Makkah, and it was the first Qibla (direction of prayers) for the early Muslims.
It is a huge open space with multiple indoor praying areas, but the entire compound is considered Al-Aqsa.
Al-Aqsa is located in the Old City of Jerusalem, which basically is a huge, enclosed city (like a massive fort) with only a handful of doors to get in and out. It has residential areas, markets, and religious places.
The Old City of Jerusalem is made up of four quarters: the Jewish quarter, the Christian quarter, the Muslim quarter, and the Armenian quarter.
Masjid Al-Aqsa is situated in the Muslim quarter, in East Jerusalem. Legally, Palestine has ownership of Al-Aqsa.
- Why should we love Masjid Al-Aqsa?
Prophet Muhammad (sa) made His miraculous journey up to the heavens from this Masjid after He himself led the most incredible prayer in congregation, with the prophets and thousands of angels praying behind him. It is the birthplace of Prophet Isa (as). Such Prophets as Sulaiman (as) and Zakariya (sa) used to worship here.
- Why are the people in Palestine fighting?
About seventy years ago, many Jews were killed in Europe and felt unsafe, so they started coming to Palestine on boats and ships to live there. With the support of British colonial rulers, it was declared that Palestine will now be called Israel.
Israelis started taking over more and more of Palestinian homes, throwing out the families that already lived there and saying this was now their land. Beautiful Palestinian children, fathers, and mothers who had done nothing wrong have been brutally killed since then. Israeli forces did not even care that these people were innocent and had been living in these homes for generations.
In 1967, Israel took control over East Jerusalem, including the Muslim quarter. Now, Muslims living around the Masjid are not allowed to pray in the mosque, and situations like we saw last Ramadan make all the Muslims around the world very sad and angry.
Palestinians are fighting against the Israeli powers for keeping their land and their homes, which are being taken away from them illegally.
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