Friends of Al-Aqsa is a UK based non-profit making NGO concerned with defending the human rights of Palestinians and protecting the sacred al-Aqsa Sanctuary in Jerusalem. This vision is supported by various international groups and organisations. Friends of Al-Aqsa was first established in 1997 and now has an international support base.
Aims & Objectives
The following aims and objectives are being pursued using all the available peaceful, legal and democratic means:
(a) Highlighting Human Rights abuses suffered by the Palestinians
(b) Putting pressure on the British government to make Israel respect International Law and human rights
(c) Bringing the Palestinian issue to the attention of those concerned with International Law, human rights and UN Resolutions
(d) Mobilising international condemnation for Israel’s apartheid policies to be manifested through the boycott of Israel
(e) Educating people on the issue of Palestine through conferences, lectures and publications
(f) Emphasising the significance and the centrality of the al-Aqsa Mosque to the Islamic faith and the Muslim identity and re-affirming the Muslim historic and religious rights to the area
(h) Working in conjunction with international heritage, cultural and humanitarian organisations in joint ventures to advance these aims
Join us in opposing this brutal occupation and working to achieve a Free Palestine by getting involved with your local branch.
Frequently Asked Questions
Palestinians consider 'Palestine' to be the area covered by what we now call Israel, plus the Occupied Territories. It borders Lebanon in the North. Syria and Jordan in the West. Touches Saudi Arabia and Egypt in the South and the Mediterranean Sea in the East.
The city of Jericho was built around 10,000 years ago.
People who can trace their roots, over many centuries, to the land of Palestine – often referred to as the Holy Land.
3,000 BC – Canaanites were the People of Palestine
2,500 BC – Canaanites around Jerusalem. Jerusalem was established by Jebusites, a Canaanite tribe.
2,000 BC – Prophet Ibrahim/Abraham [as] migrates to the land of Palestine/Jerusalem.
1842 BC – First mention of Jerusalem discovered in a text [Egyptian].
1,700 – 1,500 BC – The rulers of Egypt called Hyksos invades Jerusalem.
1,350 BC – First mention of Jerusalem as a city state discovered in an Egyptian letter called the Tel Amarna letter.
1,250 BC – Prophet Mussa/Mosses [as] leads his people out of Egypt.
1,200 – A people from Greece called the Philistines occupy the Land of Canaan and most probably Jerusalem, and rule it for only 40 years.
1,200 – 1,020 – Jebusites rule the city of Jerusalem.
1,020 BC – Prophet Daud/David [as] fought a battle with the Philistines, destroyed them and established the Ancient Israel.
965 BC – Prophet Sulayman/Soloman [as] succeeds Daud [as] as the King of Israel. 922 BC – After Sulayman’s [as] death the Kingdom of Israel was split. Judea in the south with Jerusalem as its capital and Israel in the north (later called Samaria).
926 BC – Egyptian forces occupy Jerusalem. However, the house of David was allowed to flourish under Egyptian rule.
701 BC – Assyrians capture Jerusalem and make the whole of Judea a tributary state.
587 BC – Nebuchadnezzar King of Babylon destroys Jerusalem including Sulayman’s [as] Temple. All Jews are either killed, exiled or taken prisoners. This marks the end of Israel after 400 years of its inception.
538 BC – Persian King Cyrus captures Jerusalem from the Babylonians and allows Jews to return as his ‘citizens’. The Jews re-built the Temple.
332 BC – Alexander the Great captures Jerusalem.
301 BC – Break up of Alexander’s kingdom. The Ptolemics of Egypt rule Palestine. 200 BC – Greek/Syrian Seleucids capture and rule Jerusalem.
169 BC – Seleucid King Antochius forbids the practice of Judaism.
167 BC – Macabbean [Jewish] revolt. Hasmonean dynasty is founded and the Temple restored.
134 BC – Syrians seize Jerusalem.
63 BC – Pompey, the head of the Roman Army captures Jerusalem.
70 AD – Titus the Roman General destroys the Temple. Jews are totally banished from Jerusalem.
135 AD – Emperor Hadrian captures Jerusalem and re-names it Aelia Capitolina and expels the remaining Jews.
326 AD – Constantine, the Roman Emperor becomes Christian. Christianity becomes the official religion of the Empire thus began the Christian era of Jerusalem.
614 AD – Persians under Khosras occupy Jerusalem.
628 AD – Heraclius the Roman Emperor re-occupies Jerusalem.
638 AD – The great Caliph Umar liberates Jerusalem.
1099 – Christian Crusades occupy Jerusalem.
1187 – Salaah'ideen re-occupies Jerusalem from the Crusaders.
1229 – Jerusalem is ceded by treaty for ten years to the Crusaders.
1239 – The Muslims regain control.
1243 – The Mongols invade Jerusalem.
1517 – Jerusalem comes under Muslim Ottoman rule.
9 Dec 1917 – The Ottomans surrender to the British. Jerusalem and Palestine become part of the British Mandate.
1948 – Al Nakba [The Catastrophe] occurs for the Palestinians. Britain evacuates from the Mandate land and the migrant Zionist terror groups destroy Palestinian villages and the State of Israel is founded.
1948 –1967 – Between 1948 and 1967, Israel controls West Jerusalem and Jordan controls East Jerusalem.
1967 – Israel occupies East Jerusalem and the West Bank.
For only 98 Years [from 1020 BC to 922 BC]. In 922 it was split into two. Israel, the Northern Kingdom lasted 200 years [922BC to 722BC]. Judea, the Southern Kingdom lasted 336 years [922BC to 586BC].
When the Palestine Problem was created by Britain in 1917, more than 90% of the population of Palestine were Arabs. There were at that time no more than 56,000 Jews in Palestine.
More than half of the Jews living in Palestine at that time were recent immigrants, who had come to Palestine in the preceding decades in order to escape persecution in Europe. Less than 5% of the population of Palestine were native Palestinian Jews.
During the thirty years of British occupation and rule, the Zionists were able to purchase only 3.5% of the land of Palestine. Much of this land was transferred to Zionist bodies by the British Government directly, and was not sold by Arab owners.
When Britain handed the Palestine Problem over to the United Nations in 1947, Jews owned no more than 6% of the total land area of Palestine.
Besides the above facts, the General Assembly of the United Nations recommended that a "Jewish State" be established in Palestine. They proposed the Jews should have about 54% of the total area of the country at a time when they only owned 6%. It is not surprising that the Palestinian Arabs rejected this plan as it meant they would have to give up their homeland.
When Israel was established in 1948, it was on 78% of Palestinian land. The Palestinians were forced off this land and although they were the legal owners of their homes, they have never been allowed to return to them.
The territorial expansion took place, for the most part, before 15 May 1948: i.e., before the formal end of the British Mandate over Palestine, before the entry of Arab armies to protect Palestinian Arabs, and before the Arab-Israeli war. In 1948, 13 towns, 419 villages, and 99 tribal lands were depopulated in order to declare the State of Israel, occupying 78% of Palestine. 85% of the Palestinian population were driven off their lands.
In 1948, the number of refugees was estimated (by the Conciliation Committee) to be 804,676. In 2000, out of a total (worldwide) Palestinian population of 8 million, some 5 million are refugees – the largest number of refugees in the World. Many still live in overcrowded, squalid camps, not only in the occupied Palestinian territories, but also in neighbouring countries of Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria.
.....That, the 1947 recommendation of the General Assembly in favour of the creation of a "Jewish State" was outside the competence of the Assembly under the Charter of the United Nations.
.....That, all attempts by the Arab States and other Asian countries to have the Assembly submit the question of "constitutionality" of its recommendation to the International Court of Justice for an "advisory opinion" by the Court were rejected or ignored by the Assembly.
.....That, when the Assembly began to experience "second thoughts" over the matter and convened for its second special session in 1948, it failed to reaffirm the 1947 recommendation for the partition of Palestine-thus destroying whatever dubious legality that recommendation for the establishment of a "Jewish State" originally had
.....That the original 1947 recommendation to create a "Jewish State" in Palestine was approved, at the first vote, only by European, American and Australian States...for every Asian State, and every African State (with the exception of the Union of South Africa) voted against it...And that, when the vote was cast in a plenary session on 29 November 1947, urgent American pressures (which a member of the Truman cabinet described as "bordering onto scandal") had succeeded in prevailing only upon one African country (Liberia), both of which had special vulnerability to American pressures, to abandon their declared opposition?...And that, in other words, the "Jewish State" was planted at the point-of-intersection of Asia and Africa without the free approval of any Middle Eastern, Asian or African country except that Union of South Africa, itself ruled by an alien minority.
.....That, since the General Armistice Agreements were signed in 1949, Israel has maintained an aggressive policy of waging military attacks across the Armistice Demarcation Lines, repeatedly invading the territories of the neighbouring Arab States...And that Israel has been duly rebuked, censured, or condemned for these military attacks by the Security Council of the General Assembly of the United Nations.
.....That, no other country in the world, whether member of the United Nations or non-member, has been so frequently condemned by the United Nations.
.....That, besides expelling the bulk of the Arab inhabitants of Palestine, and besides constantly attacking the neighbouring Arab States, Israel has also consistently harassed the United Nations observers and other personnel stationed along the Armistice Demarcation Lines: It assassinated the first United Nations Mediator and his military aide; it detained some truce observers; it militarily occupied and illegally searched the Headquarters of United Nations personnel; and it has boycotted meetings of the Mixed Armistice Commissions.
.....That, Israel has additionally imposed a system of apartheid upon the Arabs who remained in their homeland?...More than 90% of these Arabs live in "security zones;" they alone live under martial law, restricting their freedom to travel from village to village or from town to town; their children are denied equal opportunities for education; and they are denied decent opportunities for work, and the right to receive "equal pay for equal work".
.....That, notwithstanding the foregoing facts, Israel has always been, and still is, widely portrayed in the Western press as the "bastion of democracy" and the "champion of peace" in the Middle East.
.....That, the Western Powers have persisted in declaring their determination to ensure a so-called "arms balance" in the area, as between Israel, on the one hand, and the one-hundred million inhabitants of the thirteen Arab States, on the other hand?... And this unilateral Western doctrine of so-called "arms balance" is no more reasonable than the suggestion that, in the Cuba-U.S.A conflict, there should be "arms balance" as between Cuba and the United States... or that the whole Continent of Africa should not be allowed to acquire more arms than South Africa... or that Mainland China should not be permitted to have more arms than Taiwan... and that only thus can peace be safeguarded in the Western Hemisphere, in Africa, in Asia, or in Europe.
.....That Some 34 massacres have been committed against Palestinians – as part of the occupying 78% of Palestine.
Zionism claims to be a political expression of Jewish nationalism. Before World War I most Jews were against Zionism. To this day, there are many Jews who condemn Zionism, thus not all Jews are Zionists. Zionism has become a form of racism and the UN in 1975 ruled "Zionism is a form of racism and radical discrimination," which seeks to establish an exclusive Jewish state across the Palestinian territories.
Zionist propaganda likes to equate Anti-Zionism with Anti-Semitism. Many believe that this is to frighten pro-Palestinian campaigners. However, clearly opposition to Zionism is not opposition to a people [Jews] but to a political philosophy which claims it is impossible for Jews to be integrated into non-Jewish society.
It literally means "shaking off", and in this context it means to set free from the Israeli oppression. The first intifada began on 8th December 1987 when four Palestinian men queuing at a checkpoint into Gaza were killed by an Israeli army transporter. The second Intifada started on 28th Sept 2000 when Ariel Sharon desecrated the Al Aqsa Mosque by invading it with over 1,000 Israeli soldiers. In the resultant clashes, many Palestinians were killed and injured.