17th of Tammuz: Record Number of Jews Ascend to the Temple Mount to Commemorate Jerusalem’s Destruction

On Sunday, Jews ascended to the Temple Mount, fasting to commemorate the breach of the walls of Jerusalem that led to the destruction of the Second Temple.

Saturday was the Seventeenth of Tammuz, but if it falls on Saturday (as it did this year), the fast is postponed until the following day.

Ascending to Judaism’s holiest site is a powerful rite for Jews, requiring immersion in a mikveh (ritual bath), and wearing leather shoes is forbidden. Despite Israeli law mandating religious equality at the site, The Israeli police routinely prohibit Jews (and Christians) from praying. Jews may only enter from one gate during limited hours and only after a rigorous background and security check. Source: Israel 365

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