The Israeli Antiquities Authority commenced with a new phase of excavation of the remains of the Islamic Umayyad-era Palaces in Silwan, south of Al-Aqsa Mosque, on Sunday 26 August. Wadi Hilweh Information Center reporters photographed Antiquities Authority workers preparing for a new dig.
The remains of the palaces were opened by authorities in June last year as part of a scheme to highlight biblical history in the region. Information signs were posted around the site referencing an alleged connection to the First and Second Temples of Jewish history. New archaeological “finds” were also added to support its claims of exclusively Jewish history.
The excavations, which take place near Bab al-Rahme Cemetery, have upset great inconvenience to the local Palestinian community, with one family prevented from burying a deceased family member in the cemetery by Antiquities Authorities, who claimed that they held the rights to the burial land