Saudi police arrest man helping Israelis sneak into Mecca

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Mecca police arrested Saudis who helped Israeli Jewish reporters sneak into the most holy city of Islam, with the rule that only Muslims can enter the area. He said he opposed it.

Muslims of all nationalities and backgrounds can enter Mecca, but non-Muslims are not allowed. This is because certain forms of humility, ritual purification, prayer, etc. require very specific codes of conduct and behavior for all people within that boundary.

Public opposition to television reporter Gil Tamary’s visit took place immediately on social media, with Muslims and Saudis expressing anger at his deception and a clear disregard for the site’s sacredness.

It comes as Relations between Saudi Arabia and Israel are growing quietly In common concerns about the great enemy Iran. It is unlikely that this incident will weaken the relationship. publicly, Kingdom insists on that policy The perfect relationship is that it can only occur if the rights are guaranteed with the Palestinian state.

The protest urged Saudi police late Friday to announce the arrest of Saudis, who allegedly encouraged journalists to enter Mecca, in explicit violation of rules prohibiting non-Muslims from entering Mecca. It seems that it was done. Unidentified Saudi male citizens remain indicted and arrested.

A veteran reporter on Channel 13 in Israel filmed himself in Mecca in a segment of about 10 minutes that aired on Monday, where he visited the following major sites: Hajj pilgrimage route This is where the Prophet Muhammad gave his last sermon about 1400 years ago.

He revealed that he had deliberately slipped into Mecca with the driver, saying that no one was speaking quietly in Hebrew so that he could not hear him. He claimed to be the first Israeli Jew to enter the city. He did not tell the driver whether he was Israeli or Jewish during his recording.

In the aired clip, Tamary and his Saudi driver cross a highway fork that non-Muslims cannot pass, and then a replica of the giant Koran, the main gateway to the city. Pass below. “The dream has come true,” he says as they pass through Mecca to Mount Arafat.

After he climbs the mountain, he says religious police are starting to ask questions and want to make sure he is Muslim. They decide to leave.

Mecca The home of the cube-shaped Kaaba, the most sacred shrine in Islam, God’s figurative house in the city’s Grand Mosque. This shrine shows where Muslims around the world pray five times a day. It is also the ultimate destination for Muslim Mecca pilgrimages and small Umrah pilgrimages.

Reporters and Channel 13 responded on Twitter after the press aired. Both Hebrew and Arabic news channels said Tamary’s report was driven by “curiosity in journalism” and the desire to witness things in person. The popular Israeli channel apologized for the anger caused by his visit. President Joe Biden’s Trip To the nearby city of Jeddah. The Times of Israel cited an unnamed source familiar with the matter, saying Israeli government officials were pleased with the statement issued by the channel and its reporters.

Police in Mecca also said the Israeli people were no longer in the kingdom, but referred to the prosecutor for the actions of journalists.

A statement from Saudi Arabia does not identify a journalist, he uses an American passport because he is non-Muslim, has only US citizenship, and the kingdom has no formal relationship with Israel. It means that you have entered the country.

Police called on visitors to respect national law. Especially when it comes to the most holy places in Mecca and the Islamic kingdom.


Batrawy reported from Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Associated Press writers Josef Federman and Ariel Schalit of Jerusalem, and Fares Akram of Gaza contributed to this report.