Visiting Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque
Fatwa No: 82787

Question

What is the Islamic legal ruling concerning visiting Jerusalem now? Our Imam in US planning to take students to Jerusalem. I hear a Fatwa related to that issue, Sheik Ahmed Yaseen mention something related to that issue in his website, that any kind of visiting to Al-Aqsa mosque for any purpose is a sort of relationship with Israel. I tried to convince our Imam, but he told me to give him any Fatwa or evidence that prevent visiting to Al-Aqsa mosque or Jerusalem; so please let me know Islamic ruling relating to that issue as soon as you can.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

We do not see any inconvenience or harm in visiting the Al-Aqsa mosque in the current days and under current circumstances. The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) envisaged and wanted to make ‘Umrah with his companions when they were in Al-Hudaybiyah although Makkah was under the rule of polytheists and enemies of Muslims at that time, and the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) was compelled to make a treaty with them for that purpose. That treaty is known as Al-Hudaybiyah Treaty. As a result to this treaty, the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) made ‘Umrah accompanied by his companions.

The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) did not make his recognizing the rule of Makkah by Quraysh a hindrance to his performing the ‘Umrah. He not only recognized their rule but also signed a treaty with them.

In fact, the issue of recognition is defined by the reality on the land and cannot be denied by just making speeches and statements. No doubt the Jews have occupied Palestine by force, and it is now under their rule. Muslims are asked to fight them and expel them from Palestine. But if the Muslims are in dire need to make a temporary peace agreement with the Jews, it is lawful for them to do so as the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) did with the Jews of Medeenah when he arrived to it.

We believe that visiting the Al-Aqsa mosque helps Muslims know the hardships encountered by their brothers in Palestine, and this will motivate them to do their best to help these oppressed and colonized brothers.

Finally, we did not find any evidence forbidding visiting the Al-Aqsa mosque even while it is under the Israeli occupation.

Allah knows best.

Related Fatwa