JERUSALEM (Jan. 30)
The police stepped up their investigation of an attempted attack on Islamic shrines on the Temple Mount following the discovery today of three more hand grenades near the Lions Gate at the eastem entrance to the Old City.
The grenades were concealed in a water container and are of the same type as the 18 grenades found on the Temple Mount Friday along with a large quantity of high explosives. Those grenades were also in water containers.
They were brought to the area Friday night by unknown intruders who escaped after Moslem guards sounded an alarm. Police believe a large scale attack was planned for Friday, the Moslem sabbath, when the Temple Mount would be crowded with worshippers.
Jewish extremists are held responisble although no arrests have been made. The grenades found today and Friday are of the same manufacture as the booby-trapped grenades discovered near Moslem and Christian religious shrines and institutions in the Jerusalem area during the past few weeks. In those cases, anonymous telephone callers claimed a group calling itself “Terror Against Terror ” was responsible. The police are not sure such an organization exists.
But they said today that the large quantity of grenades and explosives found on the Temple Mount improved the chances of tracking down the perpetrators. Whoever they are, the police said, they are well trained in the use of explosives.
(In Washington, the State Department today condemned the attempted attack on Islamic shrines. State Department deputy spokesman Alan Romberg said: “We deplore and condemn the senseless effort to do violence to one of Islam’s most sacred mosques. We also note that this attempt has been condemned by the State of Israel.”)