PARIS, Sept. 22 (UPI) -- Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday threatened an intifada, or terror war, if clashes at Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa mosque continue.
After meeting with French President François Hollande in Paris, Abbas said the regular conflicts at the mosque, one of Islam's holiest sites -- controlled by Israel at a site also holy to Jews called Temple Mount -- are "very dangerous."
He advised Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu against provoking "an intifada we don't want."
One week ago, Abbas told the Palestinian Authority's official PA TV, "The Al-Aqsa is ours ... and they [Israeli Jews] have no right to defile it with their filthy feet." He also praised "martyrs" who have spilled blood on Allah's behalf in Jerusalem.
The mosque on Temple Mount often becomes a flashpoint during the Jewish high holidays, from Rosh Hashanah to Yom Kippur, which begins Tuesday at sunset.
For several days, Islamist extremists have used the mosque as a base, from which they have thrown rocks and explosives at police for a week. After a Muslim protest group, known as the Murabitat, was barred from entering the mosque, stone-throwing incidents at the site increased.
A police raid on the eve of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, unveiled a cache of pipe bombs, explosives and rocks authorities believed could be used at Jewish targets. That evening a Jewish-American driver lost control of his car as it was struck with rocks by Palestinian protesters. He died following an accident in which his car swerved into a pole.
Palestinian protesters and Israeli police have clashed in riots outside the mosque regularly, with dozens injured. An increased police presence since Friday has lessened the conflict, Israel Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said.
Although controlled by Israel, Temple Mount is governed by a Muslim body, the Waqf, whose rules include full access to Muslims and limited entry to Jews, who can visit but cannot do anything resembling worship. Jewish activists have sought increased access, though the government is reluctant to upset the current balance. Some 12,000 Jews visit the site per year, compared to 3 to 4 million Muslims.